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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The last week or so has been a little rough. Our oven quit working and did not look to be repairable (an in-the-wall unit), the $150 scheduled routine service on our family truckster SUV ended up being $2000 in recommended repairs and our bathroom remodeling project got extended by 2 weeks and $1,100 thanks to some unforeseen issues. We are blessed and very responsible financially, but with Christmas in a few weeks (not to mention three birthdays) and multiple home-related projects this past summer a $5k hit was still going to sting. Even a hopeful person would start to wonder "what next?".

The wife and I sat down and worked out a plan, we transferred some money from long term savings, and we prayed. We prayed for provision, we prayed to be better receivers of God's blessings and we prayed in thanksgiving that we live such a blessed life that our biggest problems involved the expenses and inconveniences listed above. While we continued to pray we returned to our lives unshaken and unworried. We live with a confident expectation of good and a measure of preparedness so as to never be caught off-guard.

First the appliance repairman used a network a friends and associates to find the needed part and the costly replacement was suddenly a not overly expensive repair. The motor pool manager recommended I take our SUV to a small shop on the edge of town because the proprietor does great work at a reasonable price. I did so yesterday and the repairs were completed for around 60% the originally estimated cost. His station will be the first shop we go to in the future. And if those blessings were not enough my wife came home tonight from work visibly giddy. She had her performance evaluation today and it included a bonus check. One that will take care of all of our unexpected expenses with a little to spare. Praise God.

I don't believe in coincidence and these types of things happen to us far too often for it to be a luck or chance. First you have to believe and then you have to receive. The grace and mercy of God is not just a reward at the end of the race, it's a joyous and abundant life as you run it. :)
 

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The Future?
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Praise the Lord!
 

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The Black Pilgrim
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He is good all the time if we Trust Him!!!

All things work for good for those who love Him. Rm 8:28
 

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Thank you so much Sentry for posting that....I'm sure it's not only me that needed to be reminded of the faithfulness of God..no matter what. You know what though, as I was typing this it came into my mind that favor follows you because you follow Him.............God Bless
 

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I'm happy for you Sentry. Merry Christmas to you both.
 

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I invented the internet. :rofl:
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I'm very happy for you and the blessing's He's provided ... just remember, even when times are "bad," or God seems silent or distant, God is still good ... all the time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
So true MMM.

John 16:33 says "I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world." It does not say might face tribulation; it says you will. However we can rejoice because God's grace is made perfect in our weakness.
 

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Got some trail dust in my eyes when I read this.


~by Rian B. Anderson~

Pa never had much compassion for the lazy or those who squandered
their means and then never had enough for the necessities. But for
those who were genuinely in need, his heart was as big as all
outdoors. It was from him that I learned the greatest joy in life
comes from giving, not from receiving.

It was Christmas Eve 1881. I was fifteen years old and feeling like
the world had caved in on me because there just hadn't been enough
money to buy me the rifle that I'd wanted for Christmas.
We did the chores early that night for some reason. I just figured Pa
wanted a little extra time so we could read in the Bible.

After supper was over I took my boots off and stretched out in front
of the fireplace and waited for Pa to get down the old Bible. I was
still feeling sorry for myself and, to be honest, I wasn't in much of
a mood to read Scriptures. But Pa didn't get the Bible, instead he
bundled up again and went outside.
I couldn't figure it out because we had already done all the chores.
I didn't worry about it long though, I was too busy wallowing in
self-pity.

Soon Pa came back in. It was a cold clear night out and there was ice
in his beard. "Come on, Matt," he said. "Bundle up good, it's cold
out tonight." I was really upset then. Not only wasn't I getting the
rifle for Christmas, now Pa was dragging me out in the cold, and for
no earthly reason that I could see.
We'd already done all the chores, and I couldn't think of anything
else that needed doing, especially not on a night like this.

But I knew Pa was not very patient at one dragging one's feet when
he'd told them to do something, so I got up and put my boots back on
and got my cap, coat, and mittens. Ma gave me a mysterious smile as I
opened the door to leave the house.
Something was up, but I didn't know what.

Outside, I became even more dismayed. There in front of the house was
the work team, already hitched to the big sled.
Whatever it was we were going to do wasn't going to be a short, quick,
little job. I could tell. We never hitched up this sled unless we
were going to haul a big load.

Pa was already up on the seat, reins in hand. I reluctantly climbed
up beside him. The cold was already biting at me.
I wasn't happy. When I was on, Pa pulled the sled around the house
and stopped in front of the woodshed. He got off and I followed. "I
think we'll put on the high sideboards," he said.
"Here, help me." The high sideboards! It had been a bigger job than I
wanted to do with just the low sideboards on, but whatever it was we
were going to do would be a lot bigger with the high sideboards on.

After we had exchanged the sideboards, Pa went into the woodshed and
came out with an armload of wood---the wood I'd spent all summer
hauling down from the mountain, and then all Fall sawing into blocks
and splitting. What was he doing? Finally I said something. "Pa," I
asked, "what are you doing?" You been by the Widow Jensen's lately?"
he asked. The Widow Jensen lived about two miles down the road. Her
husband had died a year or so before and left her with three children,
the oldest being eight.
Sure, I'd been by, but so what? "Yeah," I said, "Why?" "I rode by just
today," Pa said. "Little Jakey was out digging around in the woodpile
trying to find a few chips. They're out of wood, Matt."

That was all he said and then he turned and went back into the
woodshed for another armload of wood. I followed him. We loaded the
sled so high that I began to wonder if the horses would be able to
pull it. Finally, Pa called a halt to our loading, then we went to
the smoke house and Pa took down a big ham and a side of bacon. He
handed them to me and told me to put them in the sled and wait.

When he returned he was carrying a sack of flour over his right
shoulder and a smaller sack of something in his left hand.
"What's in the little sack?" I asked. "Shoes. They're out of shoes.
Little Jakey just had gunny sacks wrapped around his feet when he was
out in the woodpile this morning. I got the children a little candy
too. It just wouldn't be Christmas without a little candy."

We rode the two miles to Widow Jensen's pretty much in silence.
I tried to think through what Pa was doing. We didn't have much by
worldly standards. Of course, we did have a big woodpile, though most
of what was left now was still in the form of logs that I would have
to saw into blocks and split before we could use it. We also had meat
and flour, so we could spare that, but I knew we didn't have any
money, so why was Pa buying them shoes and candy?

Really, why was he doing any of this? Widow Jensen had closer
neighbors than us; it shouldn't have been our concern. We came in
from the blind side of the Jensen house and unloaded the wood as
quietly as possible, then we took the meat and flour and shoes to the
door. We knocked. The door opened a crack and a timid voice said,
"Who is it?" "Lucas Miles, Ma'am, and my son, Matt. Could we come in
for a bit?"

Widow Jensen opened the door and let us in. She had a blanket wrapped
around her shoulders. The children were wrapped in another and were
sitting in front of the fireplace by a very small fire that hardly
gave off any heat at all. Widow Jensen fumbled with a match and
finally lit the lamp. "We brought you a few things, Ma'am," Pa said
and set down the sack of flour. I put the meat on the table. Then Pa
handed her the sack that had the shoes in it.

She opened it hesitantly and took the shoes out one pair at a time.
There was a pair for her and one for each of the children---sturdy
shoes, the best, shoes that would last. I watched her carefully. She
bit her lower lip to keep it from trembling and then tears filled her
eyes and started running down her cheeks. She looked up at Pa like
she wanted to say something, but it wouldn't come out.

"We brought a load of wood too, Ma'am," Pa said. He turned to me and
said, "Matt, go bring in enough to last awhile. Let's get that fire
up to size and heat this place up." I wasn't the same person when I
went back out to bring in the wood. I had a big lump in my throat and
as much as I hate to admit it, there were tears in my eyes too.

In my mind I kept seeing those three kids huddled around the fireplace
and their mother standing there with tears running down her cheeks
with so much gratitude in her heart that she couldn't speak. My heart
swelled within me and a joy that I'd never known before, filled my
soul. I had given at Christmas many times before, but never when it
had made so much difference.
I could see we were literally saving the lives of these people.

I soon had the fire blazing and everyone's spirits soared.
The kids started giggling when Pa handed them each a piece of candy
and Widow Jensen looked on with a smile that probably hadn't crossed
her face for a long time. She finally turned to us.
"God bless you," she said. "I know the Lord has sent you.
The children and I have been praying that he would send one of his
angels to spare us."

In spite of myself, the lump returned to my throat and the tears
welled up in my eyes again. I'd never thought of Pa in those exact
terms before, but after Widow Jensen mentioned it I could see that it
was probably true. I was sure that a better man than Pa had never
walked the earth. I started remembering all the times he had gone out
of his way for Ma and me, and many others. The list seemed endless as
I thought on it.

Pa insisted that everyone try on the shoes before we left.
I was amazed when they all fit and I wondered how he had known what
sizes to get. Then I guessed that if he was on an errand for the Lord
that the Lord would make sure he got the right sizes.

Tears were running down Widow Jensen's face again when we stood up to
leave. Pa took each of the kids in his big arms and gave them a hug.
They clung to him and didn't want us to go.
I could see that they missed their Pa, and I was glad that I still had
mine.

At the door Pa turned to Widow Jensen and said, "The Mrs.
wanted me to invite you and the children over for Christmas dinner
tomorrow. The turkey will be more than the three of us can eat, and a
man can get cantankerous if he has to eat turkey for too many meals.
We'll be by to get you about eleven. It'll be nice to have some
little ones around again. Matt, here, hasn't been little for quite a
spell." I was the youngest.
My two brothers and two sisters had all married and had moved away.
Widow Jensen nodded and said, "Thank you, Brother Miles.
I don't have to say, "'May the Lord bless you,' I know for certain
that He will."

Out on the sled I felt a warmth that came from deep within and I
didn't even notice the cold. When we had gone a ways, Pa turned to me
and said, "Matt, I want you to know something. Your ma and me have
been tucking a little money away here and there all year so we could
buy that rifle for you, but we didn't have quite enough.

Then yesterday a man who owed me a little money from years back came
by to make things square. Your ma and me were real excited, thinking
that now we could get you that rifle, and I started into town this
morning to do just that. But on the way I saw little Jakey out
scratching in the woodpile with his feet wrapped in those gunny sacks
and I knew what I had to do.
Son, I spent the money for shoes and a little candy for those
children. I hope you understand."

I understood, and my eyes became wet with tears again.
I understood very well, and I was so glad Pa had done it.
Now the rifle seemed very low on my list of priorities. Pa had given
me a lot more. He had given me the look on Widow Jensen's face and
the radiant smiles of her three children.

For the rest of my life, Whenever I saw any of the Jensen's, or split
a block of wood, I remembered, and remembering brought back that same
joy I felt riding home beside Pa that night.
Pa had given me much more than a rifle that night, he had given me the
best Christmas of my life.
 

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God is good, all the time; He put a song of praise in this heart of mine!
 

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All He is is Good All the Time Praise God!!
 

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Dogs breath
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Just thought this may fit here...
Of all the many ,many hours that I seen on TV about the Eclipse.... not one mention of "GOD"

AS I stood in my back yard, during the full eclipse...I was just thinking....Oh My God...

Misc.jpg

Jim
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Just thought this may fit here...
Of all the many ,many hours that I seen on TV about the Eclipse.... not one mention of "GOD"

AS I stood in my back yard, during the full eclipse...I was just thinking....Oh My God...

Jim
Amen! As I witness such magnificent events I wonder how anyone can think they are all just a random occurrence and not part of the grand architect's design.
 

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Amen! As I witness such magnificent events I wonder how anyone can think they are all just a random occurrence and not part of the grand architect's design.
Fair question, because i believe in little green men over god. You asked..... Im not arguing just answering.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Fair question, because i believe in little green men over god. You asked..... Im not arguing just answering.
Actually I didn't ask, I wondered. No question mark in that post. :)
 

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Dogs breath
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Amen! As I witness such magnificent events I wonder how anyone can think they are all just a random occurrence and not part of the grand architect's design.
The sun , hotest thing we know
The moon cold as Ice,

The earth ....perfect .

The sun 400 times bigger than the moon.
The Moon 400 times closer to earth then the sun.

Amazing that when moon is PLACED exactly in front of the sun its a perfect fit for total coverage.:cool:

Somebody pretty knowledgeable had to be able to engineer all that.
AND...then do it.

I just have to believe Genesis chapter one.;):) In the begining God.:)

Jim
 

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I'll give you an amen and add a hallelujah
 
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