Be thankful for God’s greatness

Joan Clayton

After retirement 10 years ago, I mustered up courage and walked into the News-Tribune office and introduced myself. I asked if I might volunteer a weekly column, the goal being to share my faith. The editor graciously granted my request. This one opportunity has brought more blessings than I can count. I have met wonderful people and have developed long-lasting friendships. It is time to give thanks.
In those early years I typed my columns on an old typewriter and if it hadn’t been for white-out I never would have made it.
My son gave me his computer that year. Lane’s loving patience in helping me has been amazing. Maybe I’ve come a long way from learning to turn my PC on and off, but I still have a lot to learn. As I look back I can’t help but be grateful for his patient help.
I live in a town that is filled with friends and neighbors who greet me warmly. They are like hugs from God to me. When my husband was involved in a car wreck last June, the many people who ministered to us became angels of mercy. I am filled with gratitude for those who helped him at the accident scene, the ambulance drivers, the hospital staff, doctors and the many cards and prayers. You became our lifeline. We give thanks for you.
I am indebted to you, dear readers. There have been times when I felt discouraged like Elijah in 1 Kings 19:18. Elijah was reminded that many believers still existed, in spite of what he saw. So I am thankful for you. You have “put gladness in my heart” with your many notes, phone calls and encouragement through the years.
The goodness of God overwhelms me. I pray I never take that goodness for granted. Giving thanks can turn negatives into positives. “Everything is possible for him who believes” (Mark 9:23 NIV). Even in setbacks we are given opportunities for growth and learning. New challenges can bring strength and character. Limitations can stimulate a determination to overcome and win.
Being grateful to God and praising him changes my outlook and maintains an attitude of thanksgiving, and it is time to give thanks.
I thank God for:
Glistening snow in silvery moonlight, the glow of my fireplace on a cold winter’s night.
The laughter of children as they run and play, my husband’s “I love you,” at the end of the day.
The life-giving force that flows through me. With ears to hear and eyes that see.
The dove’s soft cooing as he sings to his mate. The roses growing by my garden’s gate
For friends and neighbors with a loving touch, For God’s Word, the Bible that I love so much.
For His lifting me up to a higher place and I fall asleep in His embrace.
Morning breaks with enthusiasm and all nature acknowledges God’s gift of life. Dewdrops of God’s love sprinkle the earth with the promise of a new day. This is the day for me to rejoice, and I am thankful!
Happy Thanksgiving!

Portales resident Joan Clayton is a retired teacher and published author. Her e-mail address is:
joan@yucca.net