I am always nostalgic when it is December, not only because I will be turning a year older but because the feel of it is so conducive for making a year-end inventory or, as I like to call it, “[ac]counting of blessings.”
The Lord wants us to give thanks for all things and in all circumstances (Ephesians 5:20, 1 Thessalonians 5:18). This attitude of gratitude when practiced frequently, increases the things to be thankful for as well as opens our eyes to see the blessings in every single thing, no matter how small or unfortunate they strike at first.
Would you laugh if I say that traffic is one thing I am most grateful for at this time? That’s because it gives me time to think and plan about my day or days ahead, gives a lot of time for prayer and enumerating my blessings.
What are you thankful for this year? Me, I am most thankful for having a Sovereign, Loving God who is always present and Gracious and Generous to give not only the needs but also the wants. Let me share with you some of my biggest blessings this 2017.
1. I am thankful for My God who knows what is best and who will give it to you if you trust Him. This year started knowing that my daughter and I need to move out of the home we rented for two years. We needed to find a new place to move into and I was set on renting another unit that is smaller and thus will cut our rental expense to half. But God had a better plan.
He led me to inquire about the lease-to-own terms of the property where we live, which is conveniently very near my daughter’s school. I never considered inquiring before because I know I do not have the money anyway so why even ask. But God set me up through my brother Clinton, who is always the curious one. And I am glad I gave in and asked. And truly, those who ask, receive.
2. I am thankful for God who answers prayers when you pray fervently. When I was looking at the different units for our need, two bedrooms and a spacious kitchen and dining area, there were a lot of options. But I wanted God to choose for me. He said in His Word that that home will be His dwelling place, His tabernacle. So I wanted Him to tell me which one.
At that time in February, I was reading Exodus, and He answered me through Exodus 34:06—by naming His characteristics. It was as if He was telling me, “I am here, I am the Lord.” Unit 3406 was one of the units on my shortlist, which I was really eyeing. He gave me the verse the last night before the reservation fee’s deadline. My God is always on time!
3. I am thankful for my God who gives more than we ask or think. When our contract was about to expire, and our unit was not ready yet, our landlord disallowed us to extend even a day in their place. So the property management had to house us somewhere. But the residents who lease their home only allow at least three months of lease. So on our final day, we had a house-full of things but nowhere to transfer them to. But God is great. He housed us in a hotel, which the property shouldered for two months.
I did not worry about not having a place to live in because I know my God will never forsake us (Hebrews 31:6). I trusted Him to work and I just prayed. And our temporary hotel unit had two TVs, free wifi—which I really needed for work—, daily housekeeping and fully furnished with appliances and with the same oven I need to continue baking for a living. It was a place that was beyond what I could ask for and think of at that time—wow, God!
4. I am thankful for my God who is sovereign and knows His Perfect Timing for everything. Payment for our home is very flexible but quite heavy for the early downpayment and transfer periods. I do not have a huge savings. But I have a God who has unlimited riches, who assured that when He gives, He gives in full.
During the due date of our down payment, the receivable I was expecting to cover that expense was delayed. But instead of worrying I held on to God more and prayed even with my spiritual family members! And can I tell you how God works? He also delayed the due of the cheque by a week, to match the arrival of the delayed payment I was expecting.
Even more, God orchestrated it conveniently that the company even asked if they can just deposit it in cash straight to my account instead of me going to their office to claim the cheque. And so, on a payday-Friday, I received a call from the bank saying that this X amount plus P1.00 was deposited.
Prayers truly move mountains and even deadlines. This year one great thing I am most thankful for is how my problems and circumstances have pushed me to pray more and draw nearer to God. And My God is faithful to draw near me too.
Next week, let us continue counting blessings as I turn 30!