Friday, November 25, 2011

Thankful for Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is not a day.  It's an attitude.  Whatever you focus on gets bigger.  Sometimes it gets so big that you can't see around it.  Do you suppose this is why the Lord gave us Philippians 4:8?  

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true,
whatsoever things are honest,
whatsoever things are just,
whatsoever things are pure,
whatsoever things are lovely,
whatsoever things are of good report;
if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise,
think on these things.

How I would love to have the discipline of keeping my mind on these things.  I would love to have these things in the forefront of my thinking all the day long.  Sometimes I feel like if I could just get to the bottom of all the things that are wrong with me, I'd feel a lot better.  But no, the truth is that I'd feel worse.  Because when you scrutinize things and spread them out under a microscope and try to identify all the little culprits that are stealing your joy, those things become your focus, rather than all the things around you that would bring you joy, if you could just quit majoring on the bad stuff!

On Thanksgiving Day I was tired from a lighting-quick trip to Wichita and back, stuffed with turkey and all the trimmings, and ready for a clean-up-avoidance nap, when someone in the family said, "Let's take a walk!"  It was SUCH a beautiful day (thank you, Lord), and I have such a wonderful family, and well, I just couldn't stay home. Guilt is strong. :)

We have a lovely wooded trail along the river.  It's a snowmobile trail of course, but do you see any snowmobiles on it?  Of course not.  There's no snow!  Yippee!  (Oh wait, I am supposed to be looking forward to that.)  Instead, leaves and trees and rocks and weak sunshine and dried seed pods and the smell of cold fresh air and natural compost... all riches.  The natural world is ready to be hidden away under a beautiful blanket of white.  White, like my soul after Jesus washed me clean in his blood.  

There were other things to explore, like this roof in the middle of nowhere.  A teeny shelter?  A wishing well in the wilderness?  A reminder of God's protection and provision?

And the stillness of the river, a deep and silent current that brings life to millions of creatures along the way.  Peace for the soul who knows God.  Refreshment for the weary.  A balm for the turbulent spirit.  

The walk was good. GOD is good. O, magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together. Let me focus on him up close, so that he grows bigger in my sight, so that all I can see is my Jesus. 

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By the way, congratulations are in order for Amy, who finally won a first place at the Edit Me Challenge! She will be opening an Etsy shop for photo edits.  She took this dark river scene and gave it an amazing transformation on her blog.  Go see.  And see the original shot here. Nice job, Amy!

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Wanna see desert kids make a snowman?  Notice the sandals.  :)

This photo needs a crop, but then you'd miss the snow kitty.  (It's really a dog.)  All that remains of our snowmen is their heads and a bunch of lumps, and a few carrots on the ground.  We're ready for more snow, and this time we'll do it right, Minnesota style -- in boots, with coats on!  Like this.


  1. That looks like fun, we do not have snowball snow very often so snowmen and snowdogs are not very common here.

  2. Melissa, you don't have snowball/men snow in Alaska? Really??

    Sally, Thank you for that very time and well written post. I appreciate it!

  3. I think Melissa meant their snow is too dry to stick together for this kind of stuff. :) This was melting snow -- perfect!

  4. What a lovely, lovely walk...I could just about smell the dead leaves. Neat to see photos of the area. Next, I'm looking forward to some real Minnesota snow pictures!

    Praising the Lord with you~


  5. I struggle with similar things, trying to keep my thoughts in line with that wonderful passage. Going outdoors is an awesome way to get focus on what is lovely! I've decided that I am walking all winter. Surely there will be breaks in the weather and I can do this small thing. Usually, I go inside in late October to emerge in April, several pounds fluffier, too. Boo!


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