So, since I probably won't be near a computer most of tomorrow (save to post some recipes) I thought I'd use today to go ahead and post 8 things I am thankful for this Thanksgiving.
1. Salvation: 2 Corinthians 5.21 - "For our sake, He made Him to be sin who knew no sin, so that we might become the righteousness of God." Love that verse. Yesterday, doing pilates, I was reminded that I don't even take my next breath if not for the mercy of God. I am thankful for that breath and for the mercy of God. That He is enough!
2. Job. I love my job - I love the guys I work for and the fact that I am doing ministry, even in an admin position. It has been since 1999 working at Anastasia that I can honestly say I love what I do. And am thankful that God has allowed me to be in my position for 16 months now! Wow - can you believe it?! God is so gracious to me!
3. Church - Community. I still love the community God has given me in other parts of the world in my former churches: pastors/staff, mentors, families, my girls, precious babies who grow up too fast. But, this year (because last year was such a struggle with no church home) is an added blessing. I just joined Crossing on Sunday (officially, even though I've been going since July). Its great to have friends who care about you, people to push you, minister with, do life with. Love my new Xing Family! :)
4. Friends. One of the sub-things I'm thankful for this year is Facebook. I got on facebook shortly after coming to Louisville. Its been a great tool of ministry and re-connecting with people who spur you on for the sake of the gospel. So thankful for that online tool! But, really, am thankful for the faithfulness of friends, for God teaching me about friendships (how some come and go in life for reasons unbeknownst to us), and how God uses us in each others' lives (Col 3.15-17).
5. Family. My family will be going through some changes. Last year (2007) we all lived pretty close together as I was also in Lakeland for about 6 months. But, come April (I think) we will look very different. Mom and Dad will still be in Lakeland, I will still be in Louisville, but A/T will be in Cameroon, West Africa. So excited to see what God is going to do through them over the next 4 years, but yes, am a little saddened that they won't be a short flight (long drive) away.
6. Independence. I do not mean my freedom (as in USA), although I am very thankful for that as well. I mean my independence. Some people look at that at a negative thing, and I guess it could be. But, I love being an independent person, for moving to a new state (knowing 2 people who live here) and getting to explore and find new things, do what I want when I want, go where I want, etc. It is very fun and I never want to take that for granted.
7. Stuff. Yes, I am thankful for stuff. I am thankful for my 800 Sqft Square I call home. I am thankful for my cute little car, Charlie the Cruiser. Thankful for a new laptop, a free VCR someone gave me, clothes, cooking supplies, etc. There are so many things. Heat for one! God is so gracious to me. May I never rely on these things - but always be grateful for them - and be ready to give them up if the need arises! And share the blessings with others!
8. Mission Folks. I am so thankful to have people in my life who are called to the others sides of the world (in one way or another). Since some of these people are in closed countries: here we go with just their initials. A/T, MS, M and L M, RG, AL, L and K M, J and K R, R and K P and probably many more. But, I'm also thankful for people who have a heart for the world who are living here in the US of A: Sarah, Bruce, Greears, Brad and Jena-Marie, Bacons, Dawkinses, Kathy L, Bob and Jackie, and so many others. They spur me on - keep me focused on God's heartbeat for the Nations for His glory.
All these things to be thankful for - all given by one Good and Gracious God!
Praise the Lord! Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens! Praise him for his mighty deeds; praise him according to his excellent greatness! Let everything that has breath praise the Lord! Praise the Lord! (or as David Platt put it: Let everything that praises the Lord have breath!)