Tag Archives: Bible Verses

Friday Flashback: Giving Thanks or Do We Deserve It?

It’s hard to believe this is the Monday before Thanksgiving. The year seems to have flown out the window somehow and left me behind in its dust.

Window days

I haven’t done a Thankful Journal this year. Truth be told, I haven’t done one in several years.

As I reflect over all I have to be thankful for, I realize I am really good at saying (or printing it) but not so good at really believing it. Somehow I feel we all fall into this trap.

In this free country of ours, it is easy to lose sight of all we genuinely have to be thankful for.

I have noticed people, myself included, tend to add qualifiers to their thankfulness.

Not really surprising when one thinks of how the last few generations have been raised.  Or more accurately, what the last few generations have absorbed when the message that everything is all about us has bombarded them through the media, school, government . . . you name it.

“You deserve a break today!” goes a popular jingle. “What about ME?” one song says. “You deserve brighter eyes!” “You deserve affordable housing!” “You deserve a better job, or car, or whatever!”

Everywhere you look, everywhere you go there is a sign with the message, “You deserve . . . : And we all fall prey to this insidious message.

            New Car DeserveNew House

Nothing seems to be enough. The government even declares that people can be impoverished AND still have a car, air conditioning and TV. How do you think the poor homeless veteran living on the street feels about this, or the poor child that has no food, a cold house, no shoes and no hope for a change? Do they “deserve” what they have just like we “deserve” what we have?

In truth, no one deserves anything (except eternal death and damnation). We’re all only here by God’s good mercy and grace.

I really didn’t mean to have a sermon, but this is what I have been led to say.

God loves each and every one of us.

Bible 2

 Luke 12:7 Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.

 He doesn’t desire that one of us be hungry or cold or any of the other realities of this fallen, sin-filled world.

Matthew 6:26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?

Luke 12:24 Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!

He’s provided a way for us to come to Him.

Ephesians 2:8-9  For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.

John 14:6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

It’s simple to come to Him. Just pray and ask Him into your heart. Then find a good church to help in your new life and to continue with following His commandments and fellowshipping with other believers.

I leave you with these verses on thanks and thanksgiving; there are hundreds of examples of verses citing thanks and thanksgiving.

1 Chronicles 16:34 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.

Ephesians 5:20 always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Philippians 4:6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

Repeat of previously printed blog post.

Promo for Hand Lettered Truth by Debbie Bratton through Ellie Claire (Hatchette Book Group, Inc)


Hand Lettered Truth, by Debbie Bratton, is a beautifully crafted book. Bratton has taken 60 inspiring verses from the Bible and created exceptionally motivating verses to inspire and encourage you while reading her book or to use as a complement to your daily devotionals.

Hand Lettered Truth would make a wonderful gift for both those new to the Christian faith and those who have been Christians for years. Readers can’t help reflecting on the verses as they peruse the beautiful colors and timely messages.

I have always loved hand lettering and calligraphy, and this book has both, along with very pretty illustrations.

I received this book from Ellie Claire through Hatchette Book Group, Inc. However, I was under no obligation to write a review.

#HandLetteredTruth @ellieclairegifts @handletteredtruth

Publisher’s Summary

See Scripture in a whole new way with this inspiring gift book that includes 60 hand-lettered verses by Instagram sensation Debbie Bratton.
Whether you are new to the Bible or are a seasoned reader, you’ll see Scripture with new eyes through these elegant hand-lettering designs from artist Debbie Bratton. Debbie began lettering in 2014 as a way to meditate on the word of God, using art to bring the Bible to life in a fresh way. She has since carved out a following on Instagram and Etsy of other creatives who find inspiration in her unique, artistic treatment of Scripture. Debbie’s attention to detail and creativity make this a treasured and meaningful gift for any occasion.
FEATURES

    • Beautiful gift book featuring hand-lettered Scripture
    • Full-color interior design
    • Presentation page for personalization
    • A meaningful gift for any occasion

Showing Love Unawares

Several years ago, I was viciously attacked at work. I believe, had someone not walked in the door (and the Lord’s gracious intervention) I would not be here today.

Through the years, even though I am basically very shy, I have taught myself because of the jobs I have held, to be more outgoing and friendly. However, after the attack, I withdrew into myself for years.

One day, as I was leaving physical therapy, I felt the Lord nudging me to start being more outgoing. I normally would have smiled and said, “Hi” to people as I passed them, but the attack left me extremely fearful of even my own shadow.

The nudges kept coming, each one stronger and more forceful than the last, so to the next person I passed by, I said, “Hi,” then hurried on my way to the car.

A few seconds later, I heard steps behind me, and even though fearful, I didn’t turn around. Then the man I had just said hi to was in front of me and facing me. My immediate instinct was to scream and run, and the poor guy must have seen the fear in my eyes, because he very kindly said, “Ma’am, thank you!”

“For what?” I asked.

“For treating me like a human. You are the first person in years to look me in the eye and say hello, and for that, I thank you.”

I stammered out the words you’re welcome to him and then rushed to my car before the tears became full-fledged sobs.

In my fear and hesitation, I would have walked right past him, but the Lord knew we both needed each other that day, because we both needed to feel humanity at its least, but feel it nonetheless.

The Lord exhorts us throughout the New Testament to love our neighbors as ourselves and that day, quite unaware that I was, I followed the precepts of Matthew 19:19b, Matthew 22:39b, Mark 12:31 and John 15:17.

I wish I could say that broke the dam and I have been able to continue since, but I can’t. I can say, though, that I try to find something nice to say to everyone I pass-from “What a pretty necklace” to “I like your tie.”

It is not easy.  More often than not, I want to run – not say something – but the Lord strengthens me and gives me the words. Oh, the joy on their faces when the realization hits them they are more than just a number in a sea of people.

(Reprint of previously published article)