Thoughts For Thanksgivings

Last night, Carol and I attended a community wide Thanksgiving service with a friend. I do not recall ever attending such a service but after last night, this may be a new tradition in our family. Below are my notes from this service.

5 External Thanksgiving Truths

  1. I am thankful that God’s word is true, faithful and proven (2 Corinthians 4:6). The word of God stands forever (Isaiah 40:8).
  2. I am thankful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 4:5). He thought enough of me that He gave Himself for me. (Romans 5:8).
  3. I am thankful for the treasure that God placed within me (2 Corinthians 4:7-10).  Greater is He who is in me than he who is in the world (1 John 4:4).
  4. I am thankful that God is transforming me to be more God-like (2 Corinthians 4:16-18). He who began a good work in me will carry it on to completion until the Day of Christ Jesus (Philippians 1:3-6)
  5. I am thankful that God chose me to be to be a part of His external story by making me His ambassador to a lost world (2 Corinthians 5:20). He made me to be salt and light to His world. (Matthew 5:13-14)

My thanksgiving is not based on what I have or where I am, it is based on whose I am. For I know I have been adopted into God’s heavenly family (Ephesians 1:3-14). Please take a moment to enjoy this video link of one of my favorite gospel hymns – Child Of The King.

Do you know the Lord Jesus Christ? I don’t mean ‘know of Him’, I mean really know Him just like you know you personal and close friends. If you do, then I thank God that you are part of my family in Christ. I pray that this blog message will renew your commitment and give you encouragement to keep on keeping on.

If you do not personally know Jesus, then let today be the day that you meet Him and let Him declare that you are a Child of the King. First step is to acknowledge Jesus is the Son of God, who died on the cross at Calvary and rose from the grave after defeating Satan. Second step is to ask Jesus for forgiveness of the sin in your life. He knows what they are and will forgive you. (Romans 10:9-13).

After doing this, start reading your Bible. The world of God gives believers strength and nourishes the soul (Psalms 109:105). Do not be ashamed of the gospel (2 Timothy 1:8), share your new-found faith with others (Matthew 10:32). Find a local church that preaches the truth from God’s word. (Ask Jesus to direct you to this place – He will. Matthew 7:7). Pray daily (Jeremiah 33:3, James 4:8).

Share your faith in Jesus by adding a comment to this post – I will pray for you as you grow in Christ.

Thanks for stopping by, y’all come back now.


Tools That Help Us In Life

Today’s guest post is from my friend Larry Thomas. 

This morning I was reflecting on my Dad and his teachings to me as a young boy. One of my job’s as a youngster was to keep the weeds out of our garden. One day I had a hoe and was hoeing weeds when my dad came by, he stood there watching me and then said Son bring me that hoe. I took it to him and he said you have the right tool but it is dull let me show you how to sharpen it. It will make your job easier and do it much faster and better.

God has also given us tools, the Bible being probably the most valuable. Do you have a Bible? Do you read it? Do you live as we are told? This one tool can help you daily if you will keep it sharp and in your mind throughout the day. 

God Bless you and rejoice in the Lord.

From 2 Timothy 2:16-17:

16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

Thanks for stopping by, y’all come back now.


The Cycle of Life

This guest post is from my friend Sandy Fletcher. Sandy and I were in band together at Westbury High School in Houston, TX back in the 60’s. After graduation we went our separate ways and reconnected through Facebook.

Sandy Fletcher Smith,
Monday, October 5, 2015

I’m thinking of the cycle of life:

  1. Beginning with childhood of course
  2. Moving to deciding what we will be when we grow up during the education years
  3. Starting the independence and first ‘real’ job
  4. To falling in love and marrying (make a mistake here and it affects everything that follows)
  5. Experiencing the joy of the births of children
  6. The busy, busy daily life of happiness and trials of raising your children balanced with work, church, etc
  7. The time of the empty nest
  8. The period of productively using any free time to enjoy yourself and volunteer to help others
  9. Retirement and taking care of elderly parents if you are blessed to have them still with you.
  10. Beginning to see the doctor more often
  11. People being nice to you because you are older (except when you are driving to slow).
  12. Going to more funerals than birthday parties and finding yourself grieving for friends ill or gone, celebrating their lives for being part of yours
  13. Depending on others to help get you through the day
  14. Departing this life for the next phase
  15. Meeting our brothers and sisters in Christ all together, experiencing the love of God that will surround us in our Heavenly home.
  16. An eternity so wonderful the human imagination cannot fathom it. There are no words in any language that can fully help us comprehend how great it will be.

I can look back now since I’m older and see most of these stages behind me . I can see some good and I can see enormous mistakes.

From this moment forward I want to do what is right and what is loving, though I will still make mistakes.

I pray my family and friends and I will keep Jesus as the most important part of our lives no matter what stage of life we may be in. That we will truly pray for each other even when we are far apart. That we will all know and study God’s Word well and apply it to our everyday decisions. That we will understand the holiness of God and be reverent and respectful of Him.

We have all heard the phrase “time flies”. That is so true. There is no guarantee of a tomorrow for us. Our wisest plan is to live all stages of life in view of eternal life. Eternity lasts much longer than this vapor, this mist of our life on earth.

James 4:14 Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away. (KJV)

God bless all my dear family and friends today. Love to you all!

Thank you Sandy for allowing me to post this on Tales From The Wagginmaster.

It makes no difference where you are in the cycle of life. The important thing is to know and serve God in all that you do, think and say.

Thanks for stopping by, y’all come back now.


Teach your Children To Pray

I can remember memorizing the 23rd Psalm and the Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6:9-13; Luke 11:2-4 ) at an early age. I did not fully understand what the words meant. Years later, after I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior, the words made sense. Both of these passages can be used to teach older children to pray.

First, the Bible is clear on our role as one who should pray. Jesus modeled prayer life and gave instruction to His followers.

But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen.
Mat 6:6 NIV)

Focus On The Family has published a short summary of the prayer life on Jesus. The summary lists Bible passages demonstrating Jesus praying for others, with others, alone, in nature, as a marathon runner. He also prayed regularly, with heartfelt conviction, based on knowledge of God and Biblical truths. He prayed with persistence and expectation.

The disciples saw Jesus praying so they asked Him to teach them about praying. (Luke 11:1). In response to their request, Jesus taught them what we now call, ‘The LORD’s Prayer”. The words are important, but the model or pattern is more important.

These are the words I memorized many years ago –

Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread.

And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil:
For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. (Mat 6:6-13, KJV)

Perhaps it would be easier for your children to learn this prayer in a modern translation such as the International Children’s Bible

Our Father in heaven,
we pray that your name will always be kept holy.
We pray that your kingdom will come.

We pray that what you want will be done, here on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us the food we need for each day.

Forgive the sins we have done,
just as we have forgiven those who did wrong to us.
And do not cause us to be tested;
but save us from the Evil One.’
The kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours forever.

Using the following model or outline will help your children understand the essential elements of prayer

Essential Elements of Prayer

Our Father in heaven,
we pray that your name will always be kept holy.
Praising God
(Ps 150:6)
We pray that your kingdom will come.
We pray that what you want will be done, here on earth as it is in heaven.
Accepting God’s Authority
(Neh 9:6)
Give us the food we need for each day.
Asking for God’s Care
(Luke 12:24)
Forgive the sins we have done, just as we have forgiven those who did wrong to us.
Asking for God’s Forgiveness
(1 John 1:9)
And do not cause us to be tested; but save us from the Evil One.’
Asking for God’s Guidance
(Ps 25:4-5)
The kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours forever.

Recognizing God as Ruler of All Things
(1 Tim 6:15)

In an article from the Huffington Post, Joyce Meyer summarized prayer like this:

The main thing we need to understand is (and don’t underestimate a child’s ability to grasp this), it’s not the length or the eloquence or the posture of our prayer that matters to God. It’s the sincerity of our heart. He doesn’t expect us all to pray the same way — He just wants to communicate and fellowship with us,

Teach your children that prayer is a language of the heart. Whether the language is spoken or remains silent, prayer gives us a tool to express our inner thoughts and emotions. Prayer also provides a means for us to support others, even those persons we have never met. Prayer is our spe­cial connection with God.

Teach your children to pray and serve Jesus – before someone teaches them to serve themselves and the world.

Thanks for stopping by, y’all come back now.



Four Points in Black and White

WagginMaster (aka Jerry):

Are you in a rut? Are you struggling to achieve that target? Don’t get bummed out. My friend at Humoring the Goddess has great advice here.

Originally posted on Humoring the Goddess:

success_failureContrary to what philosophers and psychologists think, life is really black or white.

Success or failure.

You can’t “almost” win a football game. You can’t “almost” get published. You either win the game or you don’t. You either get published or you don’t.

Yes, there are ever-increasing varieties of gray and cadet blue floating around between the two, allowing us to find a comfortable medium, but the reality is, as my friend Yoda says, “Do or Do Not. There Is No Try.”

This kind of cold reality does little to boost waivering egos. From kindergarten soccer players to ACT test takers, the world’s pressure to be a winner vs. a loser makes the grey evening darker and more obtuse.

How, then, in this truly black and white world, do we find — and retain — a healthy dose of ego? Of self worth? We merely need to how to play…

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