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Go slow. Be God-struck. Grant grace. Live Truth. Give Thanks. (Wondrous Links for your Thanksgiving)

Monday, November 19, 2012

The following content comes to you from Ann Voscamp, via my inbox (I've placed it here for easy access for myself... I wish it had arrived for my Canadian Thanksgiving, LOL, but it's never too late to or early to grow in a sense of gratitude)... ENJOY!!!

A Thanksgiving Psalm:

On your feet now — applaud God!
Bring a gift of laughter,
sing yourselves into his presence.

Know this: God is God, and God, God.
He made us; we didn’t make him.
We’re His people, His well-tended sheep.

Enter with the password: “Thank you!”
Make yourselves at home, talking praise.
Thank him. Worship him.

For God is sheer beauty,
all-generous in love,
loyal always and ever.

~Psalm 100 MSG

Adapted from Ann Voscamp

"This fallen world never stops dis-membering and we all break apart a bit more everyday… The kids squabble, we sit in ER rooms, we fail old friends, the dog dies, dinner burns.

"And even in the ache, God whispers: Give thanks anyways — do this in re-membrance of Me.

"Why in the world give thanks? Why in the name of heaven?

"Because when we remember how He blesses, loves us, when we recollect His goodnesses to us — our broken places re-collect. We re-member. We heal. In the remembering to give thanks, our broken places are re-membered — made whole. And in giving thanks to Him in the assembly, it’s our very souls that re-assemble, giving thanks to Him who let Himself be broken to make us whole. At the kitchen sink, crumbs across the counter, pots needing scrubbing, I scratch down another gift: “in this mess… I am blessed” and the ink runs across the page, all the fracture lines in my heart healing in a fusion to Him.

"So we just keep on practicing the practice of our faith in Him, the practice of thanks in all things, with just a little daily practice — jotting down the things for which we are grateful. Good and perfect! A simple little way to daily give thanks for seven things, each day of the week — seven, that number of perfection. Wholeness. Make giving thanks a daily habit — and daily wear joy!

"For all our thanks is actually for One, Christ alone, for from Him and through Him and to Him are all things.

"Life can blind and truth can hide in plain sight and the ways of God burn underneath everything. Life has blinding cycles of its own — but our God is always blazing glory. And when you whisper thanks to God — you glimpse the glory of God and pure grace colors your world.

"And I pick up a pen to thank through the fall days. And the dark ebbs and the shadows dim – and all the trees and the thankful ignite with the true colours of the glorious now."

• 7 Gifts: Good & Perfect booklet {for when you're feeling a bit broken}

• Folding directions for the little booklet…

My 7 {good & perfect} gifts today:

1. My beautiful and divine Miss O as she grows in faith, and in the courage to live that faith out loud and without apology... at 8 she is a better example of moral fibre than many adults I know.

2. My husband... loving, funny, and a true partner in all I dream for us, and the sort of man who encourages me even when he doesn't fully understand my vision.

3. My body and how well it once again carries me into, and through, my day... ever more gracefully rising to each challenge and beyond. I feel strong and capable once again.

4. Abundance... and the grace with which to see it as it wraps itself around me.

5. Wonderful full-bodied coffee laced with rich cream, sweet refreshing grapefruits and pomegranites, and amazing tomato butter melting over grilled shrimp (I ate really well today, LOL)!

6. Balance... in my life, but especially in my body as it heals.

7. Words, and the artistry with which others employ them to bless my awareness and grace my living.

Links to Make it a Great Thanksgiving Week:

1. Free Printable Family Trivia booklets for any big gathering : get everyone laughing and reminiscing around the table!



2. Immediate Elegance for any thanksgiving table (or any meal?): Free Printables of place cards, food tent cards, food labels/candy labels, straw/cupcake flags, and thank you tags — just. beautiful.

3. Bless Someone with this: the Neighbours or the mailperson or the teller at the checkout this week with this gorgeous free printable and any wee treat at all! Perfect week to be the gift to someone that may give thanks to God! Love this one!

4. Do this amazing little activity together — as a family, or class, or church


5. And the perfect devotionals to carry you peacefully all through this holiday season – arriving just in time to help really celebrate Thanksgiving!
• One Thousand Gifts Devotional: Reflections on Finding Everyday Graces by Ann Voscamp

• Other Christian Devotionals:

6. Free Printable Thankful Cards

7. Free Printables for the Jar of Blessing

8. The Free Printable “Count Your Blessings Card” – as place cards at the table, tucked in a book as a gift, laying out on the nightstand?

9. And, because this is SparkPeople, afterall... Serious Kitchen Inspiration (Beyond brilliant!!!)

Go slow. Be God-struck. Grant grace. Live Truth. Give Thanks.

Become the gift.

"May we be the blessing today and not the curse.
May we encourage one another towards an abundant life.
May we seek peace and reconciliation in our own hearts and with the hearts of those around us.
May we live humbly.
May we give people, all people; our family, our friends, our neighbours, our communities and our leaders, the benefit of the doubt.
May we let LOVE lead us.
May we let generosity guide our actions.
May we stand for what Christ stood for, or rather, stand by those with whom Christ stands. ALL.
May we get down off our fences and high posts and come down onto the level ground, into the open space where all truly live.
May we dwell in this fertile ground where our lives WILL eventually turn outward toward others.
May we allow our focus to turn from me to them to you and finally to us.
May we live united.
May we seek SHALOM.
May we be reminded of the image of God in all of our lives.
May we seek communion with all.
May we be the blessing not the curse."

prayer written by Melissa Greene – Nov 7th, 2012

May the grace and truth of our Father surprise you all over again this Thanksgiving, my dear SPARKling friends!

{{{{{{{{{{{ HUGS }}}}}}}}}}}

Oh! Just one more... Click here to download the FREE JESSE TREE Advent Family Devotional!

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