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Inspirational Articles by Lygia Lovelace



Sock Baskets, Grey Hair, and God's Blessings



"Mom, do you realize how old you are in dog years? If my calculations are right, you're over 300 years old!"


Isn't that the way life is? You teach them how to multiply, and then they use it against you!


Sometimes it's hard to be thankful. Houses get dirty right after you clean them, children must be taught, then re-taught the same thing again…animals add to the mess in the home…time brings new wrinkles, grey hair (as do children!)…


Just a glance at my "sock basket" can send me into a slump. Most of us wear flip flops in the summertime because I hate folding socks. And it's not the kind of chore that I can just assign to the kids. It's complicated! Everyone has their own size and style, and it's just not always easy knowing whose socks are whose. But now that the weather is cold, I have no choice! Eventually I'm going to have to wash and fold socks.


Recently my sweet mother sent everyone a new package of socks. They arrived at our house in 2 medium-sized boxes. I counted 77 new pair of socks!

"I won't have to wash socks for more than a week!" I thought happily as I unwrapped them, folded each pair of socks, and placed them in everyone's clean laundry pile.

Well…that was over a week ago. Sigh. Now I have 77 pair of newly washed socks, unmatched and unfolded in my sock basket, ready to be folded and put away.


It's easy to forget the blessings of life, especially when there are so many distractions and "socks to fold." But I'm truly thankful for Thanksgiving! I can't wait to celebrate it this coming Thursday! Each year we take time to read about the Pilgrims and their struggle with first living in our land. Do you know the story? Just tonight I told the story of the very first Thanksgiving to the kids in our home Bible study.

Do you know what really happened?


Life was hard for the Pilgrims their first year here. There were so many delays in actually beginning their journey, that by the time they arrived in the "New World," it was very cold. It took months to build shelters, and then they were faced with the dilemma of what to eat. They found small supplies of corn, and had a few supplies left over from their journey, but it was barely enough to sustain all of them. Food became so scarce that the Pilgrims had to ration the corn they had found -- it was all they had left! 5 kernels a day -- that's all each of them received.


5 kernels a day! Think about that…how would you eat them? All at once? Would you make them last throughout the day? Would you share them with your children, who were becoming thinner and paler every day…? What about with your husband -- who had lost so much weight that you hardly recognized him?


Over half of the Pilgrims died that first winter, though not from starvation. There were only 5 women left! But these men, women, and children never gave up. They never turned their backs on God. They trusted Him to sustain them and carry them through. Their religious freedom was worth their very lives.


It's astounding to be reminded of how Squanto came into their lives. He was a lot like Joseph from the Bible -- he had been sold into slavery -- from the New World into Africa. From there, he escaped and found passage to England, where he worked until he saved enough money to buy passage home again. While in England, Squanto learned to speak English fluently. He learned the ways of the "white man." God had a plan -- for the Pilgrims and for Squanto.


When Squanto returned to his home, his whole tribe was gone! They had been wiped out by some sickness -- a disease believed to have been brought to the New World by the white man. Heartbroken, Squanto really had no place to call home. He lived among other Indian tribes in the area.


God sent the Pilgrims to the New World according to His own perfect timing. The Native Americans knew that the newcomers had arrived, and some tribes would have slaughtered them -- seeing them as a threat to their homeland and, understandably, to their health. But Squanto was there to bridge the obvious gaps. Because he spoke fluent English, he translated for the Pilgrims and helped to establish peace between the white man and the native tribes. Then, he stayed with the Pilgrims for a time, teaching them to plant, to fish, and to hunt in a way that enabled them to survive.


God is truly amazing. God is our Great Provider.


That first Thanksgiving feast, many months after the Pilgrims had arrived in the New World, was truly a joyous one. The Native Americans came and brought food. The Pilgrims were able to harvest and cook the food that God had provided them through Squanto's help. It was a time of sharing.


But the Pilgrims would not forget that hard first winter. Though there was much food to eat that first Thanksgiving celebration, the first course that day was an empty plate…each with only 5 kernels of corn.


In silence, they took the time to ponder what God had done. Five kernels were a reminder of what God had brought them through.
After a moment of gazing at those 5 kernels -- right in front of the Native Americans -- they bowed before their God in deep gratitude. They would never forget their hardships…and the God Who sustained them.


Admittedly it's been a tough year for the Lovelace family. We've stumbled through job loss, bone disease, hospital stays, financial trouble, wheelchairs, heart problems, tears, and discouragement.


But pondering the experiences of the Pilgrims makes me feel truly thankful this season for what we DO have -- life, family and friends, our church, food to eat, and even our sock basket! Life is a gift, you know? And it's precious.


Oh loved one of God! Look at your empty plate. See the 5 kernels? God is using them to sustain you -- to remind you that He is there.
Has your year been a tough one?


He loves you. He has a plan. You want to know God's will?


Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances,
for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.
I Thessalonians 5:16-18


Be thankful.



Copyright © 2011. Faith Matters by Lygia Lovelace. All rights reserved. KenLovelaceMinistries.com

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