People get up in arms every year about Christmas overtaking Thanksgiving. It seems like It comes earlier every year. I notice the stores had Christmas decorations for sale before Halloween. Even though the world has commercialized the season, I loved seeing the pretty trees while I was recuperating from brain surgery. Knowing that I'd likely miss most of that this year, I enjoyed the moment.
The first official proclamation of Thanksgiving in the United States came in the middle of The War of Independence. It was set for December the 18th, 1777 just one week before Christmas. You should read it, click here.Thanksgiving has always been my favorite time of year. For me, it marks the beginning of the Christmas season. I've never separated the two holidays because according to the bible we should be doing everything with thanksgiving. (Phillipians 4:6) and there's nothing I am more thankful for than when God shows up. Everyday should be Thanksgiving and we should be getting prepared for God to show up. Christmas is my favorite holiday because God finally does just that. He shows up. I know He's always been around but I am talking about in person. Mary wrapped the babe in swaddling cloths but God wrapped heaven's purest light in flesh. He became like us so we could become like Him.
I don't think it's an accident that our country's first proclamation of Thanksgiving comes in the middle of a war or that we are in a sermon series called Fight just before Thanksgiving. In the bible many times songs of praise and thankgiving would go before the army into battle. Jesus's tribe, Judah, would go first. The name Judah even means praise. We do it every Sunday singing before the speaker's battle. We exit after a song to prepare us for our upcoming week's battle. God will show up in the battle if we first praise Him and the founding father's knew it. They knew the scriptures. They knew the biggest spiritual battles ever fought had been won through the praises of the Father by Christ. They knew Jesus had shown up Hell's war against Heaven. The devil brought that war to Earth. So the Father, sent his son to finish what satan shouldn't have started. Jesus arrived just in the nick of time to save the day.
So, it doesn't surprise me one bit that God shows up in the middle of my greatest battle so far. One thing I love about this season is the miracles that happen. Yesterday, as my awesome my group prepared for battle, at a benefit they planned for me, Julie lead us in one of those amazing prayers. The kind that invites the Holy Spirit and makes you just know "God's got this." As we held each other's hands, I could feel it. I can't tell you how many times I heard those words "God's got this" from people. I know He does. Even better was hearing believers we don't go to church with saying over and over they could feel the Spirit there. Well, two or more were gathered in His name and He was definately in the midst. It was overwhelming as well as miraculous. Like Thanksgiving and Christmas rolled together. Highlights of the day were:
No accidents, no bickering. No real problems. From the weather to the restrooms, everything worked out great. Everybody seemed to have a great time. With that many people, it's a miracle.
Kids getting their faces painted by my super talented sister. Her gift is one of God's miracles and so is she.
Seeing many of my friends love on me. It was like a real life ending to "It is a Wonderful Life". In life , you wonder if people really care about you. I have had the most amazing gift, the ability to know. To all of my friends and family thank you.
The food was great. So they say. Our entire my group didn't eat. They were serving. Isn't that just like them? We fixed 600 plus plates of Chicken Bog out of what was supposed to feed 500. A couple of guys can tell you how the pot seemed to grow Bog as they stirred the pot.
Maybe we should "stir the pot" more often and see if God will show up more often.
Getting an old friend to finally commit to going to church with me. I counted seeing him today as a miracle.
Helping out another family in need. Our small group donated to a family yesterday. Sometimes you have to give to receive. To get a miracle you need to be one. After the event was over, the amount we shared was returned in more than ten fold. We raised $25,000. Call it what ever you want but I know that's a miracle. It's an answer to prayer. It's a defeated spirit of anxiety. I promise to spend it with prayerful consideration.
It's got to be a miracle that Diane's angel food cake didn't sale. It's crazy good but God knew I wanted it. At this point, He was just showing off but He wasn't finished.
Willie, gave two neat gifts. When we went out to eat, we had prayer for an expectant mother. It just so happens the highchair didn't sale at my event. You guessed it he gave it to her. It's either a great run of luck or a miracle. The second gift was to me, a road sign that says ROCKstar Rd. There's nothing miraculous about that. It did however, remind me of one or a dozen. It's a miracle I ever took the road to The Rock Church. One I am glad I didn't miss. Without that miracle, I know yesterday would not have happened. I know God did it but I know who God used to do it through. If you helped or came I am eternally thankful. Merry Christmas.