I wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving celebration. We have so much to be grateful for even when life is difficult or painful. The blessings co-exist alongside the difficulties.

I encourage you to take a moment this week to reflect on the many blessings that fill your life each day.

Sometimes it helps to try to picture what your life would be without those wonderful gifts. Imagining the absence better defines a life overflowing with good things. It also stirs up gratitude in your heart.

How to Identify Blessings in Difficult Times

In the stresses and disappointments of every day, and even in the middle of painful experiences, you can still choose to be thankful. This is not a feeling. Rather it is remembering good things are still present in your life. Get in touch with these things by engaging 2 simple steps: pause to contemplate, and discipline to make a list. This is the very spirit under this holiday of Thanksgiving.

Fun Activity for a Thanksgiving Gathering

My family has participated in a very fun activity for many years at Thanksgiving. Whether we are by ourselves a particular year or the house is crowded with guests, this activity has become a tradition. Little ones and big ones all enjoy it. Teens even get creative with the activity.

Tape a big paper or poster board on a wall or door. It can even be the size of your door if you have a large roll of paper. Then put out a jar or basket filled with color pencils, crayons, or markers. Put some kind of title at the top, like “Our Blessings,” or “Grateful Poster,” or “Things I’m Thankful For.”

Then encourage all your guests to write as many blessings as they can think of on this poster all through the day. Plant an idea with kids and teens to draw pictures of what they are grateful for. Lead by example and start writing your blessings.

You will have joy as you watch everyone visit this posting several times to add more things. Make a promise to your family/group that after it is filled, you will make a big batch of popcorn for everyone to enjoy. You might even make caramel corn. It’s a lovely way to end a full day of feasting – with a thoughtful light snack. While the corn is popping, have the kids read out the many blessings to everyone. Ask everyone to bow in a prayer as an adult thanks God for incredible blessings.

Holiday Season

Now that most of the leaves have fallen in many climates, we enter the holiday season. We are getting to the end of another year, closing in on the special celebration – Christmas. The candles, spices, goodies, and gifts are right around the corner.

These traditions and special moments remind us God became a human baby to be our substitute sacrifice for sin. Our greatest gifts are forgiveness, freedom, and friendship with the loving God of the Heavens. What better way to enter this time than to have prepared your heart through thanksgiving!

I wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving. Pause and thank God! Feast and have fun!


Christmas Right Around the Corner

With Christmas and December right around the corner, I want to mention my book Celebrate Advent: A Life Response to Emmanuel. This small, beautiful holiday book gives you a short inspirational thought for each day of December to prepare your heart for Christmas. The week between Christmas and New Years guides you through action steps to go into the next year with purpose and goals. This little book even includes the Scriptures written on one side of the page. In a busy month, you don’t have to look them up. There is a short section where you can journal your thoughts about the brief reading. The beautiful pages invite you to participate. This is my most popular book.

Order your copy of this little book to help you focus on the reason for Christmas in the midst of a very busy month. To get it before December, order now! This book is a wonderful gift to help someone else navigate the holiday season and stay intentional in celebrating God’s gift of Jesus.



Connect with Us and Get a FREE Resource!

SIGN UP and get – “How To Turn Scripture Into An Alive and Active Life” with practical ideas to refresh your Bible Study.

You will also receive weekly inspiring articles to read. If you are super busy, you can listen and multi-task, using the web player at the top of each article – OR – subscribe on your favorite podcast app.


* indicates required

Prepare Your Heart For Christmas – Advent #1

You prepare for Christmas in so many ways. But how do you prepare your heart? It’s a challenge. This treasured holiday is a time for celebration, cheer, friends, family, and worship. However, because Christmas has become highly commercialized, it takes skill and pensive preparation to fully participate in the hustle and bustle without losing it’s meaning.

This is the first in a series to help prepare your heart for Christmas. Each week we will light another candle in our hearts as a statement of preparation in Advent. Read More …

Read More »

Thankful While Busy

As I’ve been preparing for a mostly traditional Thanksgiving meal, I’ve been reminded how much planning and preparation goes into special celebrations we hold dear. These are added onto regular activities and responsibilities of each day. So, managing everything during the holiday season is critical. Additionally, remembering there are many reasons to be thankful while busy keeps you centered. Read More …

Read More »

Do You Wonder About Prayer?

Sometimes I wonder about prayer. How to pray most effectively. Do my prayers make a difference? Sometimes I wonder how to engage this precious relationship with an invisible person. I know it’s critical, and I’ve engaged it for many years. But in our physical, visible daily reality, going after invisible qualities can be hard to define. Do you ever wonder about things like that? Or do you wonder about prayer? Read More …

Read More »

Rise Up Higher

While reading a favorite author recently, I noticed new ideas I’d missed from reading them in the past. These ideas encouraged me to keep going after something God placed in my heart years ago. What was that? “Rise Up Higher.” After pursuing this for years, I can tell you – it’s a really good place! “Rise Up Higher” has so many practical applications. Enjoy this content. Read More …

Read More »

Trick or Treat – Real Life

This week in many communities, you will hear the phrase, “trick or treat.” Fall is in full swing. Candy. Caramel apples. Cider – hot or cold. Chilly air and colored leaves (in some geographies). Hayrides. Some folks decorate their yard for Fall. Others prefer a Harvest Party with games, costumes, stories, and pumpkins. But these festivities don’t change the reality – trick or treat is real life. Read More …

Read More »