First of all, I want to say "Thank You" to my dear friend, Liz, for mentioning me for a blog award. How sweet of you to do that. It has been quite a year and I have not been as good about posting on here as I used to be. I get to where I have so much to say that I don't know where to begin or what to talk about so I just avoid it altogether sometimes.
So me not blogging doesn't mean there's nothing to say...LOL! There's just too much sometimes and I don't take the time to jot it all down. But I feel with it being the Christmas season, that there is nothing better to do than to say thanks to Jesus for all the blessings that He has given me in my lifetime. It is a thank offering to Him to celebrate His birth and His life that He has given so freely to us. And with it being a difficult year for my family financially, I have been forced to find all the things I have already been blessed with, and to be thankful and greatful for all the un-material things God has given me. And for that I am thankful, because I have felt more full this year than ever before.
Thank you Jesus for:
1. My husband- for the love and friendship that is growing between us, and for continually holding our marriage into Your hands. Thank you for making Tim a man after Your own heart and for never letting him go. Thank you for the amazing father that You have made him to be for our girls. You knew what you were doing when you joined us together 11 1/2 years ago and I know there so much more that you have planned for us. Thank you for the gift of your promises and hope for our life together...and thank you for fulfilling your promises for our life.
2. Hannah - what a beautiful, sweet, loving daughter she is and I am so excited about the things you are doing in her life right now. Thank you for giving her a heart to reach out and disciple her lost friend and for the amazing letter that she wrote us in her journal. That was a gift that will never be forgotten. Thank you for answering my prayers when I pray that my children would first and foremost learn to love you with all their heart, soul, mind, and strength. And thank you for loving them more than even I can. I pray that you show us how to raise her in a way that she will have a love relationship with you that lasts her lifetime during her journey here on earth.
3. Faith - I prayed for 2 years for this little girl when we were wanting to have our 2nd child. Though the waiting was hard, she came in your perfect timing and she has become such a tender-hearted, loving, and compassionate little girl and brings so much joy to our lives. I pray for her to know that our love for her will never waver no matter how much or little she sees it, and that she will find her true identity in You and You alone. I give this child to you and ask that you would meet her every need from the inside out and help Tim and I to know how to help her cultivate a lasting love relationship with you.
4. Rebekah - What a wonderful unexpected blessing this child is, who came at a time when we thought our family was complete. But you had other plans and now I just can't imagine life without her. She brings such life and joy to our family that I can't describe. I love that she needs the quality time that I love having with her. And that she is so affectionate and embraces every happy moment we give her. She has a smile and presence that lights up a room and brings such laughter to this family that we wouldn't have without her. I pray, Lord, that you would use Rebekah's vigorous and captivating nature to shine Your light to others. That people would be drawn to her because of her love for You, and because your love flows through her to others. Inhabit her heart in a way that is real and contagious, and that she will never want to run from you all her days of her life.
5. Mom and Dad - Words just aren't enough to describe the blessings that come from having such loving, giving, caring parents. My dad has become a patriarch of our family and has shown a love for us that will never be forgotten. My mother is such a selfless, sacrificial giving person and is truly one of my best friends. And you just can't put a price on that. Thank you, Jesus, for putting me in the family that you did and that we have been able to grow in our love for each other over the years instead of grow apart like so many families do. I pray that you will continue to grow our relationship with each other and that there will be lasting blessings that come from our family for generations to come. Create a bond of peace, joy, and love for you that can not ever grow old or weary.
6. Matt and Shelly - I am so greatful for my brother and "sister". Though my relationship with Matt hasn't always been the closest, that doesn't change how much I love him and believe that he was placed in my life for a reason. I hope that our relationship can grow from here on out and that we can find common ground in ways we never knew we could. That would be such an extra special gift from above.
Thank you God for Shelly. She has been such a an awesome addition to our family over the years and I am so blessed to call her my sister I never had. And I love her desire for You in her life. She inspires me and I hope and pray that our relationship would grow and mold into something more than we could imagine. She is considered one my best friends and though we don't see each other as much as we'd like, I pray our bond does not go away and actually grows stronger because of your place in our life.
7. My friendships - I tried listing them all but I'm too scare of leaving someone out, so I'll just say that I would not be where I am today without my amazing sisters in Christ. Every one of them that has been part of my life, whether big or small, has been a huge impact on my walk with the Lord and has poured so many blessings into my life that I really am just too overwhelmed to list. I have learned this past year that I can't take any friendship that I have for granted and that God in his sovereignty and provision, very intricately places each person in my life for a reason and I hope that I can be to others what they have been to me. I hope and pray that what has been poured into my life by my Lord and Saviour through my friends and sisters in Christ, can be poured out of me to them all a hundred times over. Thank you, Jesus, for friends. What a blessing from above.
8. My family in NY- I have grown more and more greatful and blessed by all of the family I have away from home. I am so blessed by our visits with them every time we go up there and whenever they make it here. I have grown to miss them more and more over the years. I pray especially for Becky, Beth, Scot and the Waters family during this time of year as they are missing Mike. I pray that this will be a year that they can say that You were still present in their lives even in the midst of their sorrow. I pray that they can find the joy and hope that only comes from You and that they can find the hope in Your promises for their lives. Thank you for the blessing that they are to me. I love my family in NY.
9. The Christmas carols that my children are currently singing to me as I'm typing. It's the sweetest thing ever and a gift (don't worry, I stopped and watched them).
10. Giving Yourself to us - You left the heavenly realms and walked in our shoes for 33 years to bring good news to the poor, and to give your life sacrificially so that we may have a love relationship with you for eternity that we couldn't conjure up on our own. You rescued us from eternal death and gave us eternal life. You love us the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow no matter how sinful or wretched we are. Your unabashed love for us is something that no material item can match. What I want for Christmas is for every knee to bow and every tongue to confess that you are Lord over all the earth. That we realize that you are the reason we walk, breathe, and exist on this earth. I pray that our lives will reflect your glory this Christmas season and that your light will shine in a way we've never experienced before.
"For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 8:38-39
May this Christmas season bring you more of Christ than ever before, my friends. For He is our ultimate Gift.