WHAT ARE YOU THANKFUL FOR?

November 22, 2020

This coming Thursday, Nov. 26, 2020, will be Thanksgiving Day. It’s one of my favorite holidays. It is a day that President Lincoln established as a day when families could get together and be thankful to God, the giver of all our blessings.

Let me start this post with a question. What are you thankful for? Sandra and I discussed that question as I was taking notes for this post.  We both asked ourselves what were our most important thoughts about what we were thankful for. We could both write a book about our blessings and still would not have them all listed.

I’ll bet you a gold monkey, as my Mother used to say, that you, dear reader, have so many blessings too that you can not possibly name them all.

Sandra and I just spoke of the great highlights of our blessings. We both were thankful for our lives, for the gifts and graces God gave us to allow us to work and provide for our families, certainly, we listed our families as a very great gift from God to be thankful for, we both were grateful for being born in America, grateful for the house we live in, grateful for all the food God has given us and on and on I could go

Does that list sound similar to yours?  I’m sure there are many similarities, plus you probably have unique blessings that you are thankful for.

All of us have things we should be and would be thankful for if we knew about them. By that I mean, how many blessings do we have, such as God protecting us from dangers, etc. that we simply don’t know about?

A few years before my Daddy died, he had gotten several little cards that one could clip to the sun visor of their car that had a small metallic angle on it. The caption under the angel said: “Don’t drive faster than your guardian angel can fly.” I kept mine on my sun visor until we traded cars a year ago and forgot to remove the card from my sun visor.

A note about our MANY blessings. I’ve had trouble with insomnia since about age 15. I was discussing with my grandmother Mae when I was around 17 or 18 years old. I told her that I still had problems getting to sleep sometimes. She gave me this antidote for insomnia. She said after you lie down to go to sleep, say your prayers first. Then begin counting all your blessings, all you know about, and thank God for them all as you are counting them in your mind. She concluded by saying you’ll always fall asleep before you finish naming them. What a wise old woman she was. She was 100% right about what she told me.

Again, I bet that story is similar to yours about not being able to count all your blessings.

I can’t name all of my blessings but want to share with you one of my most recent blessings. It took place last Wednesday, Nov. 18th.  I never experienced anything like it before.

I’m always an early riser and had planned the day before that I would go to a hardware store about 5 minutes away from where we live. I needed to replace about a 10″ tire on our two-wheel cart that had a split tire and was ruined. I got to the store a few minutes before it had opened and parked directly in front of the store, waiting for it to open.

The store opened a few minutes later and I went inside to find a replacement tire like the bad tire I was carrying in my hand. There were about three people who went in the store at the same time. I went to the back of the store where I knew they had a display of tires. It took me maybe 5 minutes to find a match for my bad tire, so I went and got in line to be checked out. There were two people in front of the line waiting, so it took me a few minutes to wait to get checked out.

Once checked out, I began my journey out of the store to my car just outside the store. I was carrying a tire in each hand. To get to my car I had to step down off the concrete no more than a two-inch drop.

To most people, a two-inch stepdown is no problem. But I have arthritis in both knees and for many years I have walked bone against bone as there is no cartilage in my knees. So I have to be very careful when I step down off anything. And that day I was carrying a tire in each hand. I knew I may be a little off balance when making that little stepdown. I called myself being extra careful. But when I made the step off that two-inch ledge, my fears came into play. Immediately when I made that first step, I lost my balance and knew I was going to fall. It’s a miracle how much a person can think of in a nanosecond when in danger.

My first thought was, “God help me not to get hurt when I fall on that concrete.” I was going down right on my face. I had enough forethought, or instinct, to put both my arms in front of my head as I was falling. I was preparing for the worst.

As I was falling, I felt a hand grabbing me between my neck and the loose-fitting sweatshirt I was wearing. I didn’t have time to speculate what it was. But as I hit the concrete I could tell that there was nothing broken. Then, two big arms reached around my torso right beneath my arms and lifted me on my feet as though I was a little rag doll. It was then that I saw the man who had helped me. He led me about two steps to my car where I held on to the roof and obediently did as this man said.  He said, “Hold yourself up on your car while I go get your tires.”  The tires had rolled about 50 or 60 feet downhill on the parking lot. It was then I could see this man who was around 6 and a half feet tall, looked to weigh around 300 pounds and very fit with huge muscles on his arms and looked to be around 30 years old.

When he got back to the car I said to him, “Thanks so much for helping me.”  He replied, “I’m just thankful to God I was in the right place at the right time to be able to help you. Where do you want me to put these tires?” I told him to put them on the back seat, which he did.

Then he opened my front door to help me get seated as we both could tell I was very sore over the fall. I got in my car and was busy buckling up my seatbelt and getting the keys out of my front pocket to go in the ignition. I intended to talk to this man some more, but he had disappeared.

I looked everywhere for this man while still seated in my car. I looked and waited for several minutes for this man inside the store I had been in. The store had a glass front from side to side and the top. He was not in the store. And I did not see him in the store when I was shopping.

I would have waited even longer, but Sandra was at home and I had told her I would not be gone over about 20 minutes. I had called her while I was waiting to see this man to tell her I would be a little longer. But her phone did not answer, so I needed to get home to keep her from worrying.

On my drive home, I wondered about my experience with this man. Was he a guardian angel?

The Bible is full of instances where angels have helped people. I thought of some specifics as I drove and pondered. Immediately I thought about the angel delivering Lot and his family from danger while they were in Sodom (Gen. 19:15). And I thought of Daniel while in the lion’s den and how the angels shut the mouths of the hungry lions. And how the three Hebrew youths were saved from the fiery furnace they were thrown into for not bowing to the image of Nebuchadnezzar. The king himself declared when he looked inside of the furnace and saw four people, not three. The king brought them out and said, “Blessed be the God who sent his angel and delivered The servants that trusted in Him.”  (Daniel 3:28.}

And everyone, I’m sure can remember that when  Jesus came down from the mountains where he had fasted for 40 days and 40 nights. The devil came to tempt him, three different times. But Jesus did not give in. Finally, the devil left Him and we are told the angels came and ministered to him.  (Matt. 4:11).

When I got home, Sandra could tell I was having more difficulty than usual walking.  She said to me rather loudly, “What happened, Spencer?”  I told her the whole story. Then I added to the story what I was thinking on the way home, “Who am I that Jesus would intervene and protect me?”

We both discussed that for a while.  And I further thought that besides angels we read about various saints intervening for different things in our lives. Saint Joseph is considered the Saint who helps protect us. I could continue but I won’t.

So I’m thankful this Thanksgiving Day that I am not nursing a broken leg or ankle. Or something else. Indeed God protects us and gives us all so much to be thankful for.

God Bless You,
Spencer Plumley

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