GIFTS OF GRATITUDE
"Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs with gratitude
~ Colossians 3:16
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1. Our Pastor has been preaching on Queen Esther and this week he wanted us to remember important grace markers or turning points in our lives and church. One way he said to do this as a church was to record our "Gifts of Gratitude" to serve as samples of testimony to God's providence and faithful working in our lives. He mentioned several praises he had recorded in a blank journal during our morning services and two he mentioned were mine. I stood up in church to thank God the Sunday after our accident when the semi truck totaled our car for sparing our lives and then asked the congregation if they didn't know Christ to please get right with him today as we never know when our lives may be snuffed out. Accidents can happen in split seconds! The second one was about replacing ungratefulness so praise could be given instead: I choose to thank God even when I don't feel like it, so I thank God for reminders of His goodness to my family this year.
2. And speaking of family, I'm thankful for my birth family as I value grace, kindness and forgiveness more highly now.
3. I'm thankful for the jumpstart (wind-up towel snap!) from two friends who nudged and inspired me to write about two people for my History Nut of Missouri blog. One person wanted Mark Twain. I mulled it over for awhile and after watching a PBS documentary on Twain, I decided to write about his mother, Jane Clemens, instead. I'm also extremely grateful to find enough information for a 300 word biography about her. The other person was Walt Disney. As to those two guys, I wasn't sure I ever wanted to write about them as both already have had tons written about them. Well, if either of my friends want to come to Missouri to visit their heroes, they'll know where to go as I always try to find all the places that might feature
them in my home states such as a museum, park, etc. and list it below their biographies.
4. While I can understand their need to get out of the cold, I don't appreciate Mickey and Minnie setting up housekeeping in my house and making a mess. This gal can't get down on my hands and knees to scrub like I used to and I really appreciate those long handled sponges that allow me to reach the back recesses of kitchen cabinets via a kitchen chair. Like my mother would say, they are the greatest thing since sliced bread! smile!
5. I mentioned several posts ago that I have a hard time shutting down the brain at times. Part of the ideas zipping and zooming through my brain are creative ideas, so I'm known in some circles as an idea generator, however, I also have to give myself permission get creative and use some of those ideas.
Did you know that apprenticeship to master craftsmen might have taken 3 to 7 years just to get to the journeyman level? A child of ten or so was sent to a master in order to be trained in a trade of some sort and the apprentice got on-the-job training by following the master's directives and laboring for him in his workshop. Then after reaching the journeyman level of mastery, there was even more study to become a master craftsmen. The training would be meticulous and somewhat arduous at times, but after learning, for example, to paint by studying and reproducing a master's work, the student would learn the art of painting well.
As a Christian, I'm in apprenticeship to the Master Craftsman. His word says to:
"See that you make them according to the pattern shown you on the mountain."
~ Exodus 25:40.
"They serve at a sanctuary that is a copy and shadow of what is in heaven. This is why Moses was warned when he was about to build the tabernacle: 'See to it that you make everything according to the pattern shown you on the mountain."
~ Hebrews 8:5
So I'm studying the Master Artist's craftsmanship (am drawn to the creative verses in the Bible) and learning how to create arts and crafts according to the patterns shown me. I don't always get it right, but I'm working on it. I learn by copying too, but give credit where due for the inspiration. That's the right thing to do as "plagiarism" is stealing somebody else's work and calling it your own. That's why we must give God credit for his creativity. The world and the heavens didn't happen just by accident. There was a designer and I can imagine His pleasure of coloring the sky, stars and the sun, the garden of Eden (Weedin') and molding and baking the first man, Adam and putting him and his mate, Eve, into the garden to take care of it.
" Hope is the special gift of the Lord for the creative edge of our lives in which we realize that if anything of lasting value is to be done HE MUST DO IT. Our only task is to discover what He's doing, where He's breaking through, and then, join and follow Him."
~ Lloyd Ogilvie.