Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Abounding with Thanksgiving

Posted On: 06/25/2007
Colossians 2:7...abounding therein with thanksgiving.

I have typed this twice and somehow lost the contents both times on this sweet little computer. So…I will try once more before being convinced that I am, for some reason, not suppose to post this on my "blog" (who EVER came up with that word??) ! Three times you’re out, right?

I have been asking the Lord to give me clearer sight. Not physical…but spiritual. I know that I think so much like a...fallen human being…in spite of reading the Word and seeking to live out what I read and learn. I want to see how HE sees things….and so I have begged God for more insight on living out my Christianity. I believe that I will be changed if only I can see, even slightly, through His eyes.

This morning I went grocery shopping. As I walked through the parking lot of my favorite grocery store, I was thinking how hot it was….about 90 degrees already….and how I would ask the cashier to bag the grocery bags really full so that I could take fewer trips from the car to my kitchen when I got home. The sun was beating so brightly that I nearly ran into the two women walking in front of me. One said loudly to the other "I hate grocery shopping more than anything. I try not to go more than once every other week but it seems like I am always here." Her friend replied "I hate it too. It’s on the top of my things-I-hate-most-to-do list"! I smiled and their voices slowly disappeared as we entered the air-conditioned store.
I walked into the produce department and grabbed a few plastics bags for my purchases. As I looked at the plums, I had never noticed before that there were five different choices…all plums, but different kinds. Same with the peaches! I looked around and took notice of every kind of fruit under the sun....fresh fruit from all over the entire world. Some I couldn’t even pronounce and had no idea how they tasted. But they were right there at my fingertips.
It got me thinking about a conversation I just had with a friend who went to India last month on a missions trip. He said that the children he worked with in the orphanage had white rice three times a day every day of the week. Once a month a little piece of chicken was added to their serving. That’s it….rice…white rice... every day of the week for every single meal. Wow….what would the people in India think if they walked into my American grocery store?
That brought my thoughts to what my husband told me after his missions trip to Africa. The people there walked two miles each way, twice a day, with containers on their heads just to retrieve their essential water. They got the water from a polluted river! Just as I was finishing that thought I entered the beverage aisle of the store. There were bottles of every shape, size and color filled with different types of water. There was seltzer water, purified water, fruit water, vitamin water, carbonated water, carbonated water with every kind of essence imaginable, and on and on went my choices.
I began to think about the children of Israel. Sometimes those poor people get a pretty bad rap. They are known as the "Complainers of Scripture" (my description!) We say "Those spoiled brats. They were given everything they needed….God dropped mannah from heaven just for them and NO, that wasn’t enough! They wanted more water and they wanted fresh meat. Nothin’ but complainers, those ungrateful Children of God! Wasn’t enough for them that God took them out of bondage, separated the Red Sea and took care of their every need. They were SOO ungrateful!" I began thinking that I will apologize to them for my critical thoughts when I see them one day in eternity.
Because as I looked around in my huge grocery store this morning, I realized how very, very blessed I am. I live in a blessed country and God has given me so much. Much more than just the basic essential things of life. He redeemed me and sacrificed so much to free me and He meets my every need (sounds a bit like those Israelites, (wink)??)
It was right about then that the Holy Spirit put an immeasurable amount of thanksgiving, along with a song, in my heart and I wanted to sing it out loud, really loud. (If my boys are reading this they are probably hoping I didnt sing out loud in the middle of Wegmans!) Instead, I sang it loudly within: "Ive got a river of life flowing out of me. Makes the lame to walk and the blind to see. Opens prison doors, sets the captives free. I’ve got a river of life flowing out of me. Spring up O Well (which was happening to me right then and there) within my soul. Spring up O Well, and make me whole. Spring up O Well, and give to me, that life abundantly" I can’t tell you in words what happened inside of my soul. I was just abundantly thankful. Thankful for everything. I am over and overly blessed!
I didn’t ask the cashier to fill the bags full! They were already full and so was my thankful heart. Full of praise and thankgiving to a loving God who is too good to me…. He is beyond-my-imagination good. I walked out to my car and the lady who was putting her groceries in her car next to mine said "Hello" and continued, "Did you know you have your shirt on inside out?" Normally I would have been a little embarrassed. But not today! I just laughed and said "Wow, I sure do!" When I got home I made several trips back and forth from my car to the kitchen. But I did not complain. Not one single bit. I was completely happy and thankful. Thankful that I had the strength and health to carry my heavy bags of abundant blessing. God is so good.
I believe that He answered my prayer this morning! What a good Father He is…to allow me to see, if only just a little, how He sees things! And because I have seen through His eyes...I have been changed. Changed from within!!

Psalms 147:7 Sing unto the LORD with thanksgiving; sing praise upon the harp unto our God.
(The whole chapter 147 is amazing!!!)


M. said...

Hey, my friend...

This subject is definitely something I've thought about a lot, especially in terms of how to teach it to my little one...Our kids are just so inundated with STUFF, and unless they see or experience what is means to go without, it seems impossible to convey.

Even as prices soar and budgets get tighter, I need to remember to be thankful, because at the end of the day, I'm still in my warm bed, my stomach full, with no worries about my next meal or where I'll sleep tomorrow.

I'll anxiously await your next entry...Love ya!