Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Thankful Thursday - The "Little" Things

I was thinking about the little things I take for granted and thought of the standard "air, water, air conditioning, sweet tea, vehicles, jobs, family, etc." I'm so grateful for these things, and more. My heart pitter-patters when I hear that the grandbabies are on their way up most of the time. It skipped two whole beats Monday night when Nolan said, "Nonnie" very clearly for the first time repeatedly. He said it once before, but Monday night that 17.5 month old voice, when asked to say Nonnie said, "Nah-Nah". That is as good as it gets for now and that works for me. He can say Paw Paw and several other insignificant words like Momma and Daddy, LOL, But Nonnie was music to my ears. (Cue the angels singing the Hallelujah Chorus!"

This week I've been thinking about family and the legacy of faith I was born into. My grandmother and grandfather on my Momma's side of the family raised their children to believe in God and declare His love. I never remember a time of "not" knowing about Jesus and that He loved me. Momma sang of His love to me and I can remember my grandfather and grandmother doing the same. My grandfather always used to try to get me mixed up on the hand motions to the song, "Deep and wide, deep and wide, there's a fountain flowing deep and wide..." He was a hoot. I miss him terribly sometimes.

My life was not all sunshine and moonbeams, and given that I grew up in the church and eventually came to into a saving relationship with my Savior, I have to wonder where I would be today if I had a different upbringing. I was a horrid, horrid adolescent and teen and my past makes me the poster child for a life of forgiveness and redemption. I rejoice that none of my past matters, not in the eyes of my family or of God. Each and every family member, save one, has graciously extended forgiveness to me as I have apologized for my actions growing up. They realize the obstacles I had to deal with and overcome and know the factors that led to my behavior. I confessed to God my sin and He told me it had been paid in full on the Cross.

These are all 'little' things together, but things I realize that I have taken for granted in some form or fashion. In recounting this, I can truly say with the Psalmist:

“The Lord is my strength and my shield; in him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to him.” ~ Psalm 28:7 (ESV - emphasis Iris')

The Hebrew word for strength is `oz, which means:

1) might, strength
a) material or physical
b) personal or social or political

I see how God has manifested His might and strength in my life, helping me leave the past in the past and walk in the newness of a redeemed life and pray that I never take it for granted again. I pray that each day as I give thanks to Him for His strength that I live under the strength He has given me and remain strong in Him.

The Hebrew word for shield is magen. It means:

1) shield, buckler

This word comes from the word ganan, the Hebrew verb that means:

1) to defend, cover, surround
a) (Qal) to defend
b) (Hiphil) to defend

I look at how God has defended me, covering and surrounding me, and how He has protected me from so much warfare and am so thankful for that as well. My heart truly does trust in Him as I have seen Him at work so much in my life.

My heart truly rejoices and I give thanks to Him for all these things.

Father, thank You for being my Strength and my Shield. My heart trusts in You based on Who You are. You are so holy and faithful and true. I praise You for redeeming me by the precious blood of Your only begotten Son. I pray that others will see how far I have come and know that they, too, can step out on faith, knowing that You surround them with Your strength and shield. You have truly overcome so many "little" things in my life, Lord, and I give You the glory and honor for it. I could never have done it on my own. Thank You, Mighty God, and may Your Name be forever praised. In Jesus' Name...Amen.

What "little" things are you thankful for this week? God is to be praised for everything we take for granted. Let's reflect on what He has given us and praise His name together.

T - Thank the Lord with praise. "Praise the LORD. Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever." ~ Psalm 106:1 (NIV)

H - Honor Him with songs of thanksgiving. "I will praise God's name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving." ~ Psalm 69:30 (NIV)

A - Acknowledge all He has done for you. "My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth." ~ Psalm 121:2 (NIV)

N - Notice all the works of His hands. "For you make me glad by your deeds, O LORD; I sing for joy at the works of your hands." ~ Psalm 92:4 (NIV)

K - Kneel before Him in humility. "Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the LORD our Maker;" ~ Psalm 95:6 (NIV)

S - Speak of His glory to others. "One generation will commend your works to another; they will tell of your mighty acts." ~ Psalm 145:4 (NIV)

Iris has chosen a great theme this week. The little things in life are really the biggest sometimes. I'm so glad she hosts Thankful Thursday each week. Be sure to visit her by clicking on the button below and link up, leaving a Thankful Thursday post of your own.



Ann said...

I'm thankful for a heritage of faith--those lessons come back to me often, especially when I've strayed.

Pia said...

hi laurie ann! i'm so glad to be back. thanks for sharing your list of thankfuls.

oh, btw, you might want to join my giveaway. come and drop by my site. hope to see you at my little housewarming

tea party. =D

LAURIE said...

I am so very thankful for the little things as well, we never know it could be gone tomorrow but even if that is the case, it is my desire to give thanks anyway. Happy TT!

God Chaser said...

I too give thanks for His strenght and because He is my shield and becasue confessed He forgets my past. thanks for sharing. Blessings of peace, joy and love.

Jennifer said...

Oh, my goodness...I haven't thought about or sung "Deep and Wide" since I was a kid. Now that I will go to bed with that tune in my head.

I always love your precious, sweet and ever so thankful heart, my friend.

Happy TT!

Denise said...

Thanks for a wonderful thankful post.

Angela said...

I too am thankful for Thankful Thursday's. It is SUCH a blessing. THank you for sharing and also for pointing the way to Christ, for feeding us with His Word. Just a great way for me to continue digging into His Word...((hugs))

Melissa, Multi-Tasking Mama said...

Awww, how sweet that he is saying your name so clearly- that must warm your heart! Happy TT!

Blessed Mom of 8 said...

AMEN! AMEN! AMEN! Laurie Ann - beautiful post!

Blessings to you and praising God for His love!

Tammy said...

AMEN! I can so relate and my poster would be right there next to yours. I am so thankful for his forgiveness and redemption.

Melanie said...

Good Morning, Laurie Ann! Thank you so much for this great reminder to be thankful for our Christian upbringings. I know I don't know where I'd be otherwise.

Happy Thankful Thursday!

LauraLee Shaw said...

I take sooooooo many things for granted. I forget to thank Him so often. Thank you for the reminder.

LauraLee Shaw said...

I take sooooooo many things for granted. I forget to thank Him so often. Thank you for the reminder.

June said...

Here you go again, another great post.

be blessed TT,


Lisa@BlessedwithGrace said...

You made me smile, in your first couple of sentences when you listed sweet tea in the list of little things that you are thankful for. Aren't we all thankful for sweet tea!! Ha ha. On a serious note, thank you for sharing your heart with us. You always have such good "stuff" for us to read and take in. Thank you!!

ohhollyf said...

Brillant post!

SunshineofAutumnQuilts said...

It is so true about the little stuff. Thanks for posting on my Blog today, and boy am I too thankful for the clean slate we are given with forgiveness! It is also so good to be able to be forgiven but also to go and repent and ask for forgiveness. Great post today.

Jerralea said...

I loved your post, especially the acrostic at the bottom (I always love acrostics). Thanks for sharing!


I also love Thankful Thursday. It does the soul good to be thankful!

Blessings friend!

Debra said...

Laurie Ann,

Your thankful heart touches me so! Happy Thursday, my sweet sister!

Thank you for your prayers!!

Tricia said...

Hey Laurie Ann
The verse you have used just keeps coming across my path lately... and it is a wonderful reminder that God IS my strength, as He has definitely been this past week!

It is so wonderful isn't it that the Lord can so graciously redeem our past and use us for His glory! Thank you for always sharing so richly from His Word!


He And Me + 3 said...

Great Thankful post. My kids call my mom Nonnie. So cute!
You are many little things to be thankful for. When trials come, it is the little things that we need to look for that will keep our thankful hearts going.

Esthermay said...

I always smile when I see someone thankful for "SweetTea"
I'm a northerner, you know. Minnesooooohtah.
I guess it's kinda' like lutefisk up here ???? You betcha!!
I do appreciate the legacy of faith too that I've been blessed with...a little thing in that we don't dwell on it much, but without it, where would some of us be in today's world.
Wonderful Thankful Post!

Lynn said...

Hi Laurie Ann,

I just about wept when I read past makes me the poster child for a life of forgiveness and redemption....

Oh, Girl... me too!!!!!

and, I can't wait for the little ones... Nonnie.... Precious, I tell you just precious... Hugs.

Grammy said...

Hi Laurie Ann, I so enjoyed your tt post. Have a great week.

lupusurvivor said...

i am also thankful for the little things you mentioned. the comfort they bring. beautiful post.

thanks for stopping by my TT

e-Mom said...

A beautiful verse!!! So encouraging. Happy WFW. :~D

bp said...

Good afternoon! Your story about hearing "Nah-Nah" made me smile. What a sweet memory! God bless you friend.

Sandy@ Jesus and Dark Chocolate said...

Isn't it funny how you can take those precious little things for granted sometimes......but when you stop and think about them, there is much to be thankful for!!!
You are truly a blessed women! :)

BoufMom9 said...

Just beautiful! I always know i can count on coming to your blog each Thursday and leave here feeling so content and blessed.
Thank you for sharing!

saleslady371 said...

You always stir my desire for more sweet tea and Jesus. Thank you for stopping by and leaving such a nice comment!

Peggy said...

Yes, Laurie Ann...The Lord is our strength & our shield, a legacy past on to live on & on. There is nothing like a beautiful precious heart of gratitude for the inheritance of your faith...Let's give THANKS together for the little & the big things! I don't think you take any of these blessings for granted each & every one looks like you show from a very thankful HEART!

Love your grandbabies delighting you!

Lindsey said...

Your posts are so well thought out - thank you so much for helping us to learn more about how to be thankful for the little things!