Thanksgiving update, ’19

December 11th, 2019

We hope you had a good Thanksgiving Day celebration.
November has been a rich and rewarding month in many ways. The first weekend we were in Chicago for Annie’s bridal shower. Less than two weeks later we were in Colorado Springs, CO, for grandson Stephen and Annie’s wedding. What a setting, overlooking the Garden of the God’s and Pike’s Peak, with sunny skies. What a great celebration. They had graciously asked Lud to have a part in the ceremony. His comments are added below.*
We drove to Chicago and flew to Colorado Springs for the wedding. I wondered whether driving to Chicago and flying from there was the best plan for this trip, but on our drive home from Chicago, at a truck stop, a truck driver was having lunch in Arby’s , across from where we were having a snack. He asked a question about the impeachment hearings which were showing on the TV. After a few comments he asked, “What can we do?” Mur suggested prayer. He said he was praying, a..n..d…before long I went over and sat by him to go deeper in the conversation. To make a longer story short, he prayed with me, asking Jesus to be his personal Savior and ever present companion!! Was it a good decision to drive to Chicago? God answered by touching a lonely truck driver’s heart and Jesus became his friend who will stick closer to him than a brother! (Proverbs 18:24)
After 6 days home, which included Mur’s Women’s Bible Class and our ministry’s Board Meeting, we drove to Indiana to have lunch with dear friends, Ken and Dot Goss (former staff at Riverview Church). From there, after a short drive, we enjoyed some play time with our great-grandkids before taking them and granddaughter Sarah and Mike to dinner. Then, on to our daughter Debbie’s family in Atlanta for Thanksgiving. We celebrated granddaughter Maddie’s birthday and visited Sam’s university apartment as we drove to our daughter Tammi’s home in NC. But…while on the road we got a text that our Grandson Billy and his wife Sam had just been blessed with the birth of their first child, a boy, two weeks early. Amazingly the hospital was just 10 minutes off the highway we were on!!! We of course stopped and had the joy of holding our 7th great grandchild. All agreed, this was a God sighting.
This is the time of year when opportunities to share something about what Thanksgiving and Christmas should all be about. Have you prepared your heart and mind to buy up those opportunities? In the midst of enjoying family and friends, keep your eyes open for some lonely person who needs a kind, loving word of encouragement. (Proverbs 15:23, 25:11, Isaiah 50:4, 1st Peter 3:15) Psalm 126:6, says, “He who goes out weeping carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with him.” I remember a commentary that described “carrying seed to sow” as “being a leaky seed basket,” meaning, everywhere you go seed drops out of your basket, some of which sprouts and becomes fruitful. Always have some seed with you to share as opportunities arise. _____________________________________________________________________________

*For Stephen and Annie’s wedding.
The Apostle Paul, in 1st Corinthians 13, describes true love and then declares, “Love never fails.” Stephen and Annie, you have chosen to get married because you love one another. Today you’re formally affirming that choice. From this day forward, because you’re choosing to be married you must love one another because God commands this. Love was the catalyst which led to choice. Now, choice is the conveyor and cultivator of that love. Let me take Paul’s description of love to explain what that looks like:
“In times of stress love chooses to be patient.
In times of vulnerability love chooses not to envy.
In times of victory love chooses not to boast.
In times of success love chooses not to be proud.
In times of embarrassment love chooses not to be rude.
In times of advantage love chooses not to be self-seeking.
In times of disadvantage love chooses not to be easily angered.
In times of inconsiderateness love chooses not to keep a record of wrongs.
In times when evil surfaces love chooses not to delight in it.
In times when truth prevails love chooses to rejoice in it.
In times of danger love chooses to protect.
In times of question love chooses to trust.
In times of disappointment love chooses to hope.
In times of despair love chooses to persevere.
Love never fails,”
because it always chooses the welfare, well-being and worth of the one loved. That’s no doubt why Paul declared that love is the most excellent way! If ever there was a time when this kind of mature, quality love is needed, it is today, especially in marriage, in the home and within the church. So, Stephen and Annie, whatever you encounter in your marriage, ALWAYS CHOOSE TO LOVE EACH OTHER!