Monday, November 24, 2008


Last Wednesday night at FRONTLINE YOUTH we spent over an hour thanking God for His goodness through music, words from the Bible, prayer and words from the youth. As a part of the experience I shared 10 things for which I am thankful:

1) I have hope - As a youth pastor I walk with young people and their families through many situations. I have seen great joy and great pain. I have experienced both on a personal level. I can't imagine living this life without hope in Christ. The joy of the Lord is my strength

2) I have food - While so much of the world starves I have all the food I need and more. I am thankful everyday for the simple pleasures of food, good and bad.

3) I have a place to live - In my last post I talked about my dear friends who lost their house in a fire. Quickly they had options to live at least 6-10 places. Many places in the world people have no roof to cover their heads and those who have a roof are barely covered.

4) I have medical help - Tomorrow I will go to a dentist who helps me keep my teeth and prevent infection. In two weeks I go for a medical with my doctor who supports me in living a healthy life. Many in our world are lucky to see a doctor for a few times in their life and some may never see a dentist.

5) I have money and resources - I am blessed to work in a church where I am justly paid and supported. My basic needs and the needs of my family are supplied.

6)I live in a peaceful country - Our youth ministry supports four children: one in Ecuador, two in Ethiopia and one in the Congo. Our little boy in the Congo daily faces the threat of war and violence around him. I do not have that fear in the U.S. thanks to those who bravely protect us.

7) I live in a free country - Yesterday our church had a big outdoor Thanksgiving dinner and time of worship without fear of the police coming to shut us down and haul the pastors to jail. Last week I watched our President and President-Elect from two different parties peacefully sit down together.

8) I have a church family who loves me - After 24 years as pastor in the same church I am still overwhelmed by the love and care of this congregation for me and my family. I never take this for granted.

9) I have a family who loves me - My home is my castle. It is the place I can always count on for unconditional love. Through the gift of technology my home spreads to two college student children in Seattle and Boston. Their calls and encouragement add to the love of my high school daughter and wife.

10) I have a God who loves me so much He sent Jesus - I could never give enough thanks for the love, grace and mercy of God in my life to give His own Son so that I would receive the gift of eternal life.

What are your ten things?

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