Thanksgiving Reflections

Hello Friends,
I fully intended to post yesterday and wish everyone a wonderful day with family, friends, whatever your day would hold. Now I write from a different perspective, hoping you had all that and more. I hope you had all in your Thanksgiving Day that GOD intended you to have, for He knows us (and our needs) better than anyone, including ourselves. He knew us before time was established. He knitted us together in our mothers’ wombs and programmed our DNA to make us exactly who He wanted us to be–or at least gave us that potential. But He also gave us free will, enabling us to use or not use all that He made possible. He determined our parents, where we would be born and live, He protected (still protects) us from things that would be too much for us without HIM. Some will read this and think yeah, where was He when……? He was there, protecting us all from worse circumstances. It’s taken me a long time to take this in and absorb it. I didn’t accept Christ as my personal Lord and Savior until I was in my early 30s. My dad had no religious beliefs he ever spoke, mom began studying with Jehovah’s Witnesses when I was in elementary school. I was a people-pleaser, especially authority figures, so for me to say “no” to my mom’s faith was hard for me. But it didn’t feel right. God protected me from a wrong decision, keeping me from committing to a faith that didn’t ring true in my gut, even knowing it would displease my mom. When I finally decided what felt right many years later, she cried, asking me to please not do this. Scripture prepared me for this, saying family members would turn on one another when one chose to follow Christ. God helped me through this definitely not mom-pleasing time. Needless to say, she wasn’t at my baptism, much as I wanted her to be. I am the oldest of four kids and only one has followed mom and is a very active Jehovah’s Witness, married to another, who is now an elder in that church, though they don’t call it “church” That is the biggest protection from God, protecting my soul, but far from the only one.
Colossians 3:17 Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

My dad was an high-functioning alcoholic. He held a job at Pratt & Whitney building airplane engines at the highest position he could go without becoming a foreman and that was his decision. His bosses sent him to foreman school, he hated it. White shirt and tie supervision was not for him, and he returned to assembly. It still boggles my mind how he could go through a 6pack of the biggest cans Bud canned starting with the drive to work and ending with the drive home and still be that good at his job. He made a good salary, worked every overtime he could get, so provided well. But his judgement wasn’t good and he abused credit, spending way too much and causing mom to suffer (and I don’t use that word lightly) through collection calls because he wasn’t there to take them. This was a more civil time when collections worked a day shift and didn’t call evenings. When I got a job, every so often he showed me a shut-off notice or foreclosure notice and if I didn’t drain my savings no lights/phone/heat/home would be the fate of the six of us. And he did so with no apparent embarrassment of regret–repeatedly. Emotional, verbal, physical, sexual abuse were all a part of our lives growing up–but not beyond what we, with God’s help.

God knows our needs and our wants.  He supplies our needs, one way or another, here or in Heaven.  The word needs is very intentional. We often have a hard time differentiating needs and wants. By world standards, I’ve read we are in the top 2% of the population in regards to wealth. two percent!!! That is a striking statistic and one lost on most of us most of the time, myself included. I’m so grateful to be in our house, comfortable financially, but not wealthy and I wouldn’t want to be wealthy. I have a wonderful husband who has taken the wedding vows very seriously: “in sickness and in health” for example. Sickness is far more the norm than health. And I’m thankful for both the poor health and his steadfastness. If I were always healthy I wouldn’t have been prepared to mother 2 special needs kids. My son’s symptoms (finally diagnosed as autism) were blamed on me. My daughter was a premie because of my pre-eclampsia and was so strong (thank you, Lord) she pulled off the respirator at 6 hours old, rolled herself in the isolette in the NICU at 2 weeks of age; 6 weeks before she was supposed to be born. But the prednisone I’d taken in such high doses during the pregnancy prepared her lungs to function prematurely. See a plan and a guiding hand here? Both kids are now fully functional adults. Our son has some challenges yet, but we have the blessing of people in our lives who help. Not everyone, even in this country, can say that their state provides services for adult autistics. And it only became available here when E. was ready for those services.

We were blessed with hubs’ mother joining us for dinner that our daughter prepared marvelously for us in our home. She doesn’t live with us but came here to cook because she knows I’m not physically able and she appreciated the importance of this Thanksgiving. Her grandmother is 95, has metastasizing cancer and her doctors predict she may not make it past December, definitely not past January. So she was here, in the home of her only child, with her only grandchildren for this Thanksgiving. And it was truly a marvelous meal. Our daughter wants to cook professionally and I’m kicking myself for not taking a picture of the turkey, it looked like a magazine picture. Mine never did!!! I expect my mother-in-law will surprise the doctors with her longevity as she has before. But in case I’m wrong, she was here.

I hope that this doesn’t come off to you reading this as a negative post, it isn’t intended to be. Yes, it has a lot in it that is negative, but thanks to the God of the universe, His presence in our lives, His placing us in this nation of freedoms not known by so, so many people, I am very thankful. And of course, I’m thankful to each and every one who glances at my writing. Love and God’s blessing to you all,
Janet

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About craftythriftydecoratingwifemom

I thank God for all the wondrous gifts he's given me daily. Reading many of your blogs has inspired me to get busy and stay busy doing things I used to enjoy and just fell away from. And you've given me courage to try new things I've never done before, things I'd have been afraid to try a few months ago. Thank you for your unknown contributions to this woman's life.
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