Thankful Thursday

We have been planning a quick trip to my hometown in a few weeks to participate in a retirement celebration for the pastor who baptized my parents and I. Bro. Bill came to Conway the same week we moved there, and was our pastor for most of my growing up years. As I have been making plans for our trip, I have been thinking back over our years in Conway, the churches we've been involved in, and people who have made an impact on my life through the years. I'm excited that I will have the opportunity to see some of those people soon, and a little sad thinking about all the people who *won't* be there who will be missed greatly. I can't imagine going back for a celebration with old friends in Conway and not seeing Bro. Roy and Mrs. Jimmie, Miss Mary, and so many others who are gone. I'm sure it will be strange for those there to see *us* without my dad as well.

I've been reminded of many things I'm thankful for as I've taken some "trips down memory lane" lately...

*I'm thankful for Godly parents who sacrificed much for their children, and for an extended family who gave me a real sense of *family* in so many ways.

*I'm thankful for the solid, Bible-teaching churches we've been in through the years, and for the pastors and staff members who have made such an impact on my life in so many ways...Bro. Bill, Don Bingham, Bro. Roy, Bro. Larry, Ron Richardson, Steve Bell, Tommy Gilmore, Pat and Floyd, Bro. George, Bro. David McGowin, Wayne Linderman, Bro. Dave Hatfield, Kathy Williford, Keith Clutts, Bro. John, Bro. Phil, Lyndel, and Bro. Kent.

*I'm thankful for many special people who won't be at the celebration because they are already in Heaven...I can't begin to name them all, so I won't even start...but things just aren't and won't be the same without them.

*I wrote earlier in the week about our friends Mr. James, Miss Mary, Jenny, and Barrett. I am thankful for their friendship and example always. I'm thankful for many other friends in Conway who have impacted me in so many ways...many of whom have been like family to us over the years. The McKissacks, Bounds, Bakers, Gillioms, Olivers, Stuarts, and many, many others bring thoughts of thankfulness every time I think of them.

*As I look toward hopefully participating in the mass choir for this celebration, under the direction of Don Bingham, I am so thankful for the opportunity to sing with many of the people who helped develop my love of music. I'm thankful for having been exposed to *excellent* music from a young age, first by my dad, and then by wonderful church music programs. One of the people I will miss when we go to Conway is Mrs. Myrtle Lee Selig. Sitting by her in the choir at First Baptist was a real treat for a 14 year old just beginning to sing alto in the adult choir. She was quite a lady, and I was saddened to read of her death recently.

*Most of all, I am thankful for God's direction in our lives in taking my parents to Conway to begin with, and in all the ways He worked in and through that. Lots of stories there...maybe I'll have a chance to share some of them in future blog posts.:) I'm thankful that as I've reminisced lately, God has reminded me over and over again of ways that He used things that looked *bad* to bring incredible *good* in our lives. It's a good reminder to look for His hand in difficult circumstances now, and get excited about the stories we will have to tell someday of the ways that He has worked in them!

"I waited patiently for the LORD; Hhe turned to me and heard my cry.

He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire;
He set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.

He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear and put their trust in the LORD.

Blessed is the man who makes the LORD his trust,
who does not look to the proud, to those who turn aside to false gods.

Many, O LORD my God, are the wonders you have done.
The things you planned for us no one can recount to you;
were I to speak and tell of them, they would be too many to declare."

(Psalm 40:1-5)

For more Thankful Thursdays, visit Iris at Sting My Heart.


Denise said...

Such a beautiful thankful list dear one.

chickadee said...

do you live in arkansas? i'm supposing you do. have you ever been to the homeschoolblogger/arkansas site? i write there too.

eph2810 said...

How neat that you are able to go back to your home town and see some of the familiar faces. Although you will miss some of them, just know that you will see them again and will sing with them in the Heavenly choir.

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

Blessings to you and yours this Labor Day and always.