We have made it! Almost through 2017 and we are about to celebrate Thanksgiving. This is one of my favorite times of the year because we are literally told to live a life full of gratitude and thankfulness for all that we have. We may hear the following sayings from our friends and family:
"This past year has been pretty tough, but I have made it through!"
"Only a few more months to accomplish my goals of 2017!"
"I have gone almost 11 months doing ___________ and I never thought it was possible!"
"For the last year, I have been able to keep from eating bad and I feel great!"
"We have lost some amazing people this year but their memories live on in our lives!"
"I have taken new steps of faith and trust and they have been amazing!"
"Speed bumps this year only slowed me down to appreciate all the beautiful things around me!"
"The things I have struggled with for years I have been freed from this year!"
"Some things I failed at this year but look at how many things I succeeded in!"
Above are just a few things that I have personally said, in one way or another this year. I have been hospitalized twice, lost two family members, was in a relationship and then out of one, my car was hit while it was parked, I was on 6 hours of IV for 10 days and I'm pretty sure I have walked through 15 pairs of shoes.
I want to encourage you all that we can look at the things we went through this year that were difficult and there is nothing wrong with that; we are simply stating what is. But what is important it that we learn to focus on the things that have been amazing through it all! Every difficult situation can be seen as an opportunity for light to shine through as we learn to have trust, faith, surrender and love if we just learn to switch our perspectives and thank God for all He is doing.
One sad thing that I see all around me is that people spend so much time blaming God for everything that is from the devil.
Jesus said, "I have come to give life, the enemy (devil) has come to steal, kill and destroy."
When we look at life and all that is going on in our world, we must know that some things that happen, happen not always because of God's allowing but because we live in a world where people are influenced by one of two things, Good or Evil.
I pray that we learn to look at all the blessings, gifts, the things that bring life, including life itself and we focus on thanking Our Father God for all of this! He is the Creator and the one who has given you all you need. And when we walk away, through Jesus, He says, "Come back to me, I will provide the life that you need."
As I look back on the past year, it is not with a pessimistic view and I pray yours is not either.
Let me show you what my list for 2017 DOES NOT say:
> Had a failed relationship
> Almost died
> Lost all my balance and had to learn to walk balanced again
> Had to say goodbye to my Gran and my uncle who I will not ever see again
> Dealt with medical insurance and medical bills of over $70k
> Failed my yearly pushup challenge for a few months
> Had to buy lots of new shoes
Now Let me show you what my list for 2017 DOES say (get pumped):
> Met some amazing people this year and made some amazing friends
> Overcame my fear of flying and flew 14 different times
> Had a chance to visit a bunch of cities for the first time
> Fed over 1,000 homeless people
> Handed out around 50 pairs of shoes and socks to homeless people in San Diego
> Learned to play guitar and sing
> Had an opportunity to read at my Grans funeral and encourage my family members
> Prayed with my Uncle Danny for peace before he passed away
> Did over 3,000 pushups
> Started a Nonprofit
> Began working on another business
> Am making more then I ever have
> Saw $70k of medical bills turned in less then $1k, Thank You Jesus!
Okay honestly, this list could go on for hours. What I want you to see is that there is so much life in Thanksgiving and having a grateful heart. The world at times wants to leave us in a comparison state of wondering "Why is my life not like their life?" Remember what it said earlier, what Jesus said? He comes to give life and the enemy comes to bring death. Please do not succumb to the lies of the world.
You do not need a bigger house. You do not need a nicer car. You do not need more money. You do not need to have what everyone else has.
What you do need, is to know the love of Our Father shown through Jesus. Know that you are loved! You are treasured! You are adorned! You are forgiven! You are set free! You are chosen! You are wanted! The Holy Spirit will speak these things into our hearts every morning, all day, if we step back and just listen. Read the Bible, know the truth of who you are!
Hope you all have an amazing Thanksgiving and I pray you live in a constant state of Thankfulness for all the things you have been blessed with! Love you guys!