Thankful Thursday - June 12, 2008

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"Count your many blessings
Name them one by one
And it will surprise you
What the Lord has done"


Last weekend we traveled out of state for a family reunion. The family of my great-grandparents comes together each year for a wonderful weekend together. Each year there are about 80-90 in attendance (although this year we maxed out at over 100) that includes members of 5 generations. This year was a little extra special as we celebrated the 90th birthday of my dear, sweet grandmother. Because of this, my father and his siblings along with myself and all my first cousins made sure we were able to attend. As always, this was a special weekend sharing time with family members we are unable to see often. And, unfortunately, as it seems to be each year, we also mourn the loss of one or more family members and/or spend time in prayer for those that are ill or experiencing struggles in their lives.

Just a few weeks ago we unexpectedly lost a member of our family. My great-uncle John was dearly loved by all and, because he was a doctor, was also a family member that had been with many of us in times of illness. He delivered many of my father's cousins (including my father). He will be greatly missed by each one of us and especially by his children and grandchildren.

We also have several family members at this time that are very ill. One in particular that is about to begin chemotherapy treatments as he has recently been diagnosed with cancer.

Each year we end our reunion with a time of worship on Sunday morning. Each year a specific family group is responsible for choosing the hymns we will sing together and will share a devotion with the group. This year, my Dad's cousin Reba shared with us in the time of devotion. She spoke and remembered with us each of the ones I have mentioned above and how life is not always easy due to these types of difficulties and others that we may experience. However, she also reminded us that no matter what we are going through, there are ALWAYS blessings. God doesn't just send us through the rough times and that is all we experience. We can experience blessings at the same time. And, many times, we experience blessings that we would never experience if not for the difficulties.

We wrapped up our worship times with the hymn
"Count Your Many Blessings". I had not heard this hymn in quite some time and it really spoke to me Sunday morning as we all sang it together as a family. Each one of us is SO blessed... regardless of our personal situations. It is so easy to lose sight of that as we go about our daily lives. Particularly if our daily life is difficult.

So, today, I thank God that there are blessings regardless. I thank Him that He can take any situation -- no matter how wonderful or how difficult -- and He can bring a blessing through that situation.




18 Thoughts Shared:

Lynn said...

Oh Melanie,

You are rich in blessings. A giant family that wants to meet with each other and praise the Lord. That would be inconceivable in my crazy family.

Oh rejoice in this earthly family and thank you for sharing them with me.

Cheryl said...

Melanie,

So true! Our family has experienced so many blessings in the 7 months Jan has been fighting this brain cancer that we would not have otherwise experienced. Though this is not what we would have wished, we know that there is a reason and our Father knows best. We choose to be thankful daily for we have many things to be thankful for. This is our 2nd time with an immediate family member as my Dad had to fight an aggressive cancer. We trust our Father knows best.
I'll remember to pray for your family, especially this one who is beginning chemo.
Great post for TT.
Blessings
Cheryl

LAURIE said...

What a lovely TT posting today Melanie. I also love that old song, "Count your blessings" one by one! and what a great thankful heart you have to be counting your blessings even during a loss. God bless you! - Laurie

Nancie said...

Hi Melanie, thanks for sharing this blessed post with us! Thank God for blessing your family's get together. So wonderful to spend such precious time together and to experience God's love and blessings in many wonderful ways.

It is so true that we can experience God's blessings even in difficulties because He loves us and is with us through them. Thanks for sharing your thankful heart with us. May God bless you always!

The Baker's said...

Thank you for sharing about your family reunion, it sounds like fun and I am glad that you had a good time. Thank for sharing about his blessings, I tend to focus on the diffucult times and forget to thank him for the blessings and good times. Thanks for the reminder.

Erica said...

What an incredible blessing to have such a godly family legacy. I would love my 90th birthday party to be a worship service of the generations. That is definitely something to pray for. Thank you for sharing!

Susan said...

HOW SPECIAL!!!

Thanks for sharing about your reunion. I truly can't imagine still having so many relatives.

What a rich heritage you have.

Blessings to you Melanie on this TT♥

Laurie Ann said...

God bless your thankful heart, Melanie. So much to be thankful for. Counting my blessings today (and humming the hymn...)

Mommy Motivation said...

you are truly blessed to have a Christian family. THank you for sharing with us. :)

Tammy said...

A wonderful post on your family and so true.

We do have much to be thankful for.

blessings

Heather said...

What a fabulous reunion! To have so many, then to be able to thank God together. Truly a blessing!

Thanks for sharing. Have a blessed day!

Sharon said...

You are rich beyond measure! What a wonderful family tradition especially these days when people are rapidly losing their sense of family! You definitely have a Godly heritage.

Sorry about your loss...it would be one great re-union when we finally do get to heaven.

God bless you!

sharon,
http://thereservoir.wordpress.com/

Tricia said...

What a wonderful post, it brought tears to my eyes... we have had a crazy and eventful day... we had to call 911, then had to go to the doctor to get my son's forehead glued back together... but he is fine now.

Thanks for reminding me to count my many blessings rather than looking at all the difficult things that come my way! And what a wonderful family you have, that is truly a blessing! Thanks for sharing!

Sheryl said...

Wow what an amazing family reunion. You truly are blessed. What a heritage to be passed on.

Thanks for sharing your family.

-Sheryl

Tiffany Stuart said...

Wow, sounds like an intimate and priceless family reunion. Sorry to hear about your great uncle. And what a blessing to know your grandmother celebrated her 90th birthday.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts on my blog this week. I appreciate knowing what I am learning and thinking is challenging others to think. I love the body of Christ and how we are able to spur one another on.

enjoy your weekend.
In His Grip,
Tiffany

Beloved MaMa said...

beautiful, thanks for sharing :o)

eph2810 said...

I am so sorry for your loss, Melanie.

What a great thing though that you are all coming together to worship. That is such a neat thing for a family reunion.

Thank you so much for sharing your grateful heart with us this week.

Blessings to you and your precious family.

mama2dibs said...

We also have annual family reunions. Now that my great grandma has passed on to glory and all of us kids have grown up it's mostly just the 11 sisters and brothers (all but one of 12 is still alive) and some of their kids, but I try to make it every couple of years. This year, unfortunately, I'm going to miss it by one week. Hopefully next year!