Sunday, March 9, 2014

With a Thankful Heart

I must apologize! I didn’t realize this is the 9th of March until just now… and the 9th of the month is the day that the Carriers of Faith have a photo opportunity to share. I’m sorry that I’m late, Zella. Your theme is a GOOD one and one well worth showcasing!

Here is Zella’s challenge, in her words…

March Challenge: Thankfullness

Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

I've been thinking a lot about prayer lately. Then last night I was talking with a friend at church and she said "don't you sometimes feel like our prayers are list a list of requests?". That really challenged me. Yes, we are supposed to take our needs and requests to Him. But our prayers should also be about praise and worship - about thanking Him for ALL He has done for us. These verses are short - but the are packed with power! "Rejoice evermore". It's a choice you know? I chose to rejoice because He has made me exceedingly glad! I chose to rejoice even when things are difficult because He will bring me through and He is right by my side!

So what am I asking for with regards to your posts and pictures? Two things:
1. Share about something that you are thankful for....not the big things that everyone is always thankful for - but those little things that we seem to overlook...that we take for granted.
2. Share about why you rejoice and why you worship Him.
(And of course share photos!)

And there is one last part to this challenge. The prayer part. Before you sit down to write your post, pray and ask God to direct your words and your heart. And when you are done writing your post, pray for people who will read your post...that they will somehow be challenged or blessed...that the Lord will speak to them through your words and your blog.

Please check out the other Carriers of Faith blogs, too - you'll find the links in my left side bar. I am sure they have great posts to share with this theme that Zella has given us.

I’ve thought on this challenge since Zella first told us about it a few weeks ago and this is the photo I decided to share.

Brock with lunchbox in hand
as he waits for the bus to pick him up
so he can go to his job.

Yes, I am thankful for my son, Brock… but in this picture, true to Zella’s words to thank God for the little things we overlook, I am choosing to focus on the porch swing.

Why would I be thankful for a porch swing? Multiple reasons.

I love porches and with almost every move my pastor/husband and I have made, though we’ve had no say in the house that comes with the job, I have had opportunities to thank God (sometimes) for the porch that He provides with the house. That being said, this is the first parsonage we’ve lived in that had a porch swing in place before we came.

I remember fondly the Sunday that we came and visited the church, met the people, my husband preached, they voted… and we knew we were moving. We went to the parsonage with the Search Committee to look things over and our “overgrown” son Brock sat on this very porch swing, not knowing yet that we were about to turn his life upside down. See, he’s autistic and he was quite comfortable in the home/church that had been “his” for the past twelve years. How would he react to the idea of moving? Only time would tell.

After a quick look around inside, I went out to the porch with Brock. He put the swing to motion – he loves to swing! – and I chatted with him, while my husband continued to talk with the Search Committee inside the home. In that time with Brock, I said, “Brock, we’re going to move to this house and you’ll be able to swing on this swing often.” I wasn’t brave enough to ask what he thought of that idea, but his eyes said it all. He got a deer-in-the-headlight look.

While I was pleased with God’s leading and felt excited about this new venture, I ached for my son. He tolerates change better than many autistic people, but this was huge. He’d be leaving everyone and everything that was comfortable to him.

In less than a month from that day, we moved into that house. Often, in those early days, as I unpacked box after box and my husband got comfortable in his office, Brock would wander between his rocking recliner in the living room to “his” new porch and the porch swing.

We’ve now been here over 2 ½ years and Brock has become comfortable. He loves giving hugs to people at church – especially John and Brad! He loves going to work! He loves venturing to the garden with his dad or to one of the local eateries to get lunch. He loves so many things about our new home/church/community… and one of the things he loves best is this swing.

I am thankful! Because when Brock is happy, this mama is happy!

God is so good!!!


Zella said...

Jeanette, such a beautiful post!! I love your swing and understand how it can bring so much happiness and peace - I have a yard swing and I love sitting there when it's warmer. It's a great place to reflect on life and nature and spend moments with the Lord. Brock has been blessed to have you as a mom...and I can truly see that you have been blessed by having Brock. Thank you for sharing from your heart. Love you my friend!!!!

Carol W said...

God is indeed good...He has blessed Brock and his daddy with the most wonderful mama/wife. You truly are a blessing to all of us who's lives you have touched. And dear sweet Brock...what a lucky young man to have parents who understand him and know him, his wants, needs and his comfort zone. Jeanette I love and admire you and how you live your faith...I am a lucky girl to be able to call you a friend...((hugs))

kiwimeskreations said...

Oh Jeanette - I teared up when I read your post - love that you love Brock, and appreciate how rich he makes your life. So wonderful that he loves the 'new' house - and wasn't God good to provide a swing!

MiamiKel said...

A magnificent post from top to bottom! I love this picture - it's so raw and 'real-life' - what a blessed son and family! God is indeed a great provider and knows our needs long before we are aware of them ~ like Brock's wee swing! Such a shining example of a faith-filled Christian walk and I'm so blessed to be in the COF with you ♥

Shelly Schmidt said...

Wonderful post- I love the idea of relaxing on a swing, and how it is so comforting to Brock! The house was a perfect fit : )

Unknown said...

Jeanette - Your story was just what I needed to hear today! If Brock can adjust to so many changes in life and be happy with "his" porch and swing why can't we all stop to take the time to appreciate the little things God has given us? You are truly blessed with a wonderful son as much as he is blessed with you! Hugs - Tina

:: BlueInks :: said...

Oh, I love that Brock is so happy! That swing is just perfect for him. It was there for a reason!

Unknown said...

Thanks for the devotional today as I read this post. I too am thankful for little things. Two yrs ago my husband lost a very good job. He then decided to look for a full time Christian service type of job. God told him he would provide that if he waited. We are still waiting 26 months later. Times get tough and worry could take over if given the chance but we still wait. We too are thankful for those little things every day.