Thank you Jesus…

for your light, your love, and your faithfulness to us – to me! 2020 – though dark and confusing for many – your bright light continues to shine.

Pandemic, politics, illnesses, death, losses were not enough to hide your love – although we, lowly humans, felt crushed, You speak to us and calm us.

Thank you for being in my heart. No day passes that I don’t thank you, that I don’t see you, that I don’t see you at work in me. –Anonymous

Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank you for watching over me, and loving me. Knowing when I needed help, and giving me a wonderful family and friends.

Thanks for all the life lessons that I had to learn to help make me be the person I am today. The hard times, when I felt I couldn’t take anymore. Sending the right people in my life at the right time.

Thanks for all the changes in diabetic care since I was diagnosed at age 12. For the prayers answered, and even the ones not. I know you know best. for giving me my babies and all the joys of being pregnant and watching them grow and learn, laugh and cry. for giving me my wonderful husband that I love so much. He came into my life when I needed him the most.

Thank you for my church family, and friends. Thanks for the children and all their innocence.

Thank you for all the older people with all their stories and wisdom, the advice and strength they share.

Dear Father, thanks for the Holy bible with all the past stories and prophecy about our future and Jesus coming back. –Yours truly, Joyce

Dearest Jesus, I am so thankful for You. You have given me the strength,  the courage, the peace and joy. You truly are my Savior but much more than that. You showed me how to love others and even myself, to not fear rejection.
  You are my all in all. I thank you for guiding us to this church that teaches the Word and shows me how to apply it to my life. When I went through cancer You showed me Your love, compassion and concern through this body of Christ through cards and even a painting to show me I was not alone.
  I used to think You were too holy to love a sinner like me but You showed me that is why You came to earth and left perfect heaven so i could live a better life and one day be in heaven with You.
  Thank you that i can trust You to do the impossible and make it possible, for ten long yrs i have prayed for reconciliation with my baby brother. I told You, You would have to make it happen since he told me, he never wanted to hear from me and i had no idea where he lived. I thank you for the day You nudged me and showed me to look him up on Facebook. Then I was so afraid to reach out to him but You gave me the courage and the words to say. I felt like John the Baptist in Elizabeth’s womb, when he wrote back and told me he had longed for reconciliation with me and missed me dearly but had to work out some things, my heart leapt for joy.
  God, I am so humbled that You answered my prayer, “yes.” You made it possible for us to do the first ever virtual Alzheimer’s walk. Every time You do the impossible my faith in You grows bigger and bigger. I thank you for the impossibilities in my life that I can tell the world of You, so that they can see You are real.
  Your loving daughter, Jane Unbehagen

The Greatest Gift of All… When I was very young I lived in the city. My family was raised in a normal house on a normal street with a mom, a dad, two sisters, and one little brother. Christmas time was great. My siblings and I would go to a department store and shop in a kid-only department for our mother, our father, and each other. Then Christmas day would come and we would get lots of great gifts. We would spend many days playing with all our gifts with each other and our friends from the neighborhood.

When I turned eight my family and I moved from the city to a working farm here in Louisa. We moved from a three story house in the city to a two-room shack that had been previously used as a tobacco barn with no indoor plumbing. Not long after we moved to the farm house my mother and father split up. My two sisters went with my mom, and my brother and I stayed with my dad. Now Christmas was much different and gifts took on a whole new meaning. Instead of looking forward to a new bike or toy we now looked forward to a box of food that had come from a local church or kind neighbor.

Time moves on and now I am seventeen getting ready for the next change in my life. Like all teenagers I thought I knew everything. I thought I knew the true rewards of giving or getting a gift. I spent the next thirty-seven years of my life trying to give back. I would spend time helping a stranger out with a problem, or many times when I was dining out with family or friends, I would slip off early to pay the bill for everyone. I spent this time really feeling good about giving gifts.

This brings me to November 2018 and the next big change in my life. I started my walk with Jesus and learned that the greatest gift of all is not a new toy or a free meal. It is the gift of eternal life. John 3:16 says: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” Wow, what a gift! So, what am I thankful for? For sure I am thankful for Jesus and His gift of eternal life. I am also thankful for my loving church family teaching me how to be able to receive this awesome gift and showing me how I can teach others about The Greatest Gift of all. –Josh

Dear Jesus (born as a baby, just like I was); Son of God; God; Martyr; Holy Spirit; Friend; Savior; Lord… to name just a few of the words that come to mind when I think of You. Thank You for all these roles You’ve been in my life. THANK YOU!… my heart just wants to repeat that over and over… out loud, quietly, reverently… over and over… thank You!! I look forward to meeting you face-to-face one day, when I join You in heaven. When I see You there, I will hug You, sobbing in joy, I’m sure, shouting, “Thank You.” Happy birthday, Jesus. I love YOU!! Always, –Your Daughter

Thank you Jesus!

Dear Lord, thank you for coming to earth in search of us. Thank you for paying my debt and forgiving me so that I can know you personally. Thank you for my family and for my church family. Thank you for our home, the clothes we wear, and the food we eat. Thank you for the Bible, and the chance to read it and try to live by its teachings. Thank you, Jesus, for showing us a different way to live; we so enjoy your ways of kindness, humility, forgiveness, and faithfulness. Thank you Lord that when I mess up, you are patient and forgiving. Thank you that when I give up, you never give up on me. Thank you that when I look up you are always there, ready to listen, and quick to answer. Thank you, Jesus, for surrounding me with friends that know and honor you and support me on this journey! I am forever grateful! –Sam

Photo by Courtney Hedger on Unsplash