1,000 GIFTS, #949 to #966

949.  As I get so close to the GOAL of 1000 gifts, I am remembering today where it all began.  I was attending a conference for worship pastors (and their wives) with my husband, and we were in Birmingham, AL.  My first gifts, one to ten are here.  That conference is 2 weeks from today and we are part of the team that is hosting the event (Metro II) here in our state in beautiful Savannah, Georgia.  Time flies…

950.  And speaking of worship – here is our grandson Jackson singing “Where I Belong”  (Building 429)  in the tub just last night. He had heard that Pop (my husband) had sang it in “big church.”  Click on the little link below (Jackson-Tub) for 20 seconds of pure JOY.  “All I know is I’m not home yet, this is not where I belong…take this world and give me Jesus, this is not where I belong…”  Jackson-Tub

951. Phone calls at work that begin like this, “Mom, you want to meet me and Carrie and the kids at Chick-fil-A for lunch?”  Indeed!  Then lots of hugs and kisses from Zeke & Madie Ruth before I head back to the office.  My favorite way to spend a lunch hour!  Thank you Jeremy for calling and inviting me.

952. Grace beyond all measure in the continued strength and healing in my dad’s recovery.  He is a miracle of the Lord and my heart is full to overflowing with thankfulness.  He is still in the hospital but is most assuredly on the mend.  Thank you for praying.

953.  My friend Lanie invited me to an “art party.”  The sponsor is Truth Be Told Art and it was absolutely wonderful.  It is a wonderful ministry where you paint His Truth on canvas. We painted the scripture from Galatians 5:22-23, the fruit of the Spirit. The artist led us step by step and we are so proud of our artwork!  Left to right in the picture is Kathy, me, Lanie, and Joy.  Both Kathy’s and Joy’s husbands are staff pastors at our church.  Blessed time of fellowship.  Pears
954.  Thank God for the JOY of some springtime weather right in the middle of winter…record highs last week.  This may be the perfect weather to me.  Just warm and wonderful, breezy, low to no humidity.

955.  My oldest grandchild and I spent a long time just sitting on the bank of our pond on that beautiful Spring day last weekend. Zeke is a talker and we enjoyed long conversation. He calls this weeping willow our “picnic tree.”  We had a most wonderful time and I’m so thankful.ZekePond956.  And that perfect day was made more perfect by some “flowers” from Zeke. Dandelions…delightful! 🙂Dandelions

957.  I love the music of Travis Cottrell and our choir and orchestra and really our whole church enjoy his music.  Our Praise Team is working on “Jesus Saves.”  My husband is planning something very special when we sing it and it will feature a presentation of ALL the people who have come to Christ and been baptized in our church recently…YES! Jesus Saves!  I was actually in the audience the night Travis recorded this music at First Baptist Woodstock, Georgia. What a great memory!

958. I planted a Rose of Sharon last weekend.  Mine is white and I love this old-fashioned flowering shrub.  A sweet and precious friend, Jan Leary brought it to me from Atlanta.  Her father was in the hospital at the same time as mine.  We met in the hospital lobby and talked and encouraged each other through that trying time right at Christmas.  She is very special to me.  I love you Jan! We have a lot in common, beginning with our names.

959.  Life is but a vapor…James 4:14 from the Amplified Bible.  Barely a week goes by that I don’t think about something I learned from the Bible study on the book of James (Mercy Triumphs) by Beth Moore and her daughter Melissa Fitzpatrick. One cool morning last week as the vapor and fog was wafting through the pecan trees I stopped to take a picture…

Yet you do not know [the least thing] about what may happen tomorrow.
What is the nature of your life?
You are [really] but a wisp of vapor (a puff of smoke, a mist)

that is visible for a little while and then disappears [into thin air].

960.  Love this new “app” for the Scripture Memory Team!  I am memorizing Psalm 103 this year.   SSMT app

961.  Thankful for the safety of my friend Cindy who was home during an attempted break in at her home last weekend.  She is a woman of the Word and had the presence of mind to know that the attempted “robber” needs Jesus.  I am praying for God to bring her peace of heart and mind as she works through everything.  Jesus be near.

962. I had everyone over for a big family breakfast this past Saturday and we enjoyed some time outside. I love this picture of Jackson and Madie running.  They are exactly 2 weeks to the day apart. I pray they will be as close in friendship as their ages are in days…Running

963. Sweet Emery is always so HAPPY and I enjoyed some time with her in the house while everyone was visiting the cows!Emery-JOY

964. Our Pastor preached one of the most practical and clear messages yesterday on what it means to be a disciple of Christ that is GROWING in relationship with Him (from Hebrews 5:12-14).  I so desire to be a mature woman of faith!
12 For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food.
13 For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe.
14 But solid food belongs to those who are of full age, that is, those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.

1. Lack of growth limits your ability.
2. Lack of growth hinders your productivity.
3. Lack of growth reveals your immaturity.

965.  I assure you I did not draw any attention to myself or disturb anyone around me as I quickly took this picture (with my iPhone) at church yesterday, but I wanted to preserve this moment in my mind…a group of friends praying together at the close of our services.  I have no idea who or what they were praying for, but it touched me way down deep.  So thankful for small groups, Bible study, Sunday School and JESUS!  The bond that holds us all together is His love.  Thankful for that grace moment yesterday.PrayingTogether

 966.  And lastly…this quote from Dr. Perdue yesterday:

Grace didn’t come with a “to-do” list, Grace came with a DONE list.



1,000 GIFTS, #711 to #728

Was it only just last week I was so excited about a week off to slow down? Well…my heart is FULL to overflowing from the JOYS of last week’s slower pace. We enjoyed a simple staycation, a stay-at-home vacation, a concept I highly recommend…so restful for both body and soul.
711. So thankful for a wonderful service of patriotic music and powerful preaching at my church. I’m thankful to be an American citizen. Even with all the issues in our land today, there is still no place I would rather live as I sojourn this Earth…I’m praying for our country in this election year. (Daniel 2:20-23)
712. My friend Lanie and I had a “sew-in” last Friday. She brought her machine and several projects over and we also made dresses for our granddaughters. We laughed like only friends of many years friends can do. It was a day of JOY and soul therapy too…bonding and sewing and quilting.
713. Thankful to God for granddaughters. Lanie and I both raised sons, and now she has two granddaughters. I have one granddaughter and one on the way…God’s wonderful gracious grace. Here are the dresses we made on Friday…complete with monograms.
714. And here is my sweet girl in her dress…my daughter-in-law Carrie sent me this picture just this morning…touched my heart.
715. A trip to the Farmers Market with my daughter-in-law Erin for fresh vegetables to “put up” as we Southern women call that process. We blanched butter beans, zipper peas, and crowder peas for our freezers. Hard but fulfilling work. I loved spending the day with her and one of the reasons is because…
716.  …she left Jackson with us to spend the night and we had such a wonderful time with him. He is our youngest grandson, reminds us so much of his daddy at that age.

717. Here he is on the front porch with Pop, watching down the road for his mommy and daddy to come…

718. Can you see why he reminds us of his daddy at that age? Herein is proof…

719. Time with my parents without the rush of a work schedule…we spent a day going to the local peach packing sheds and enjoyed fresh peach ice cream too.  I love my parents. Did you know the first commandment with a promise in God’s Word is found in Exodus 20:12?  Honor your father and mother…

720. Garden time. Enough said.

721. An entire day spent with my husband…shopping, eating out, uninterrupted conversation, reconnecting. So sweet and so important for good marriages.

722. Praying daily for a missions team from my church in Ukraine. I love these folks – every one of them. They are gathered here on their way to the airport in the wee hours of the morning last Friday. They are awesome people on mission for Jesus. As our Pastor, Dr. Perdue says, his desire is that the sun will never set on the ministry of our church as we serve globally. We also have students in South Africa as well as down the street from our church this week, serving in a trailer park conducting Backyard Bible Clubs. I LOVE MY CHURCH FAMILY…

723. Celebrating the JOY of my spiritual birthday – July 7th. Reflecting on the day the Savior reached down for me…I.HAVE.NEVER.BEEN.THE.SAME. Half my life I have known Him. And Hallelujah, He’s known me since before there was a me. (Psalm 139:16)
724. I know I often mention my fondness for sewing and embroidery, but I am especially happy to share these “crab shirts” I made at the request of my daughter-in-law Carrie for my grandchildren and some of their friends for a beach vacation. I loved doing this for them. I asked my daughters-in-law to save all the shirts I am making for the grandchildren because I think it would be fun to make a quilt out of them all one day…can we say Memory Lane?
725. Be still my heart. My little yet-to-be-born granddaughter’s first of many monogrammed gifts from Gran Jan. TIny little Emery, we are praying for your arrival to the family in September. Can’t wait to meet you…
726. The JOY of a rare opportunity to attend our son’s church and hear him preach yesterday morning – a message from the fifth chapter of Mark where Jesus delivers the man possessed by demons. Jeremy made a strong, clear biblical application and this momma’s heart was deeply moved and thankful.
727. My daughter-in-law Carrie’s pot roast dinner on Sunday. Family around the table is one of God’s sweetest gifts in my life.  

728. One of my favorite delights from last week is this picture I took of an old fireplace out in the middle of the country. My dad stopped to let me get the picture (that in itself is a gift too). I can’t help but wonder about the family that lived here long ago and the hands that built that fireplace.

What am I building that will stand the test of time? Am I investing in the lives of others for eternity and for Christ’s Kingdom?  God help me to see past the busyness of daily living that can so easily distract me from my true purpose here…



1,000 GIFTS, #660 to #674

Along with the daily gifts of God’s goodness in our lives, this past week has been one of  milestones in our family, of birthdays and wedding anniversaries. Family is everything to me and I only wish I had more time to spend with all of them. We are busy in ministry, jobs, and taking care of day-to-day responsibilities. Just like you and your family. But taking the time to stop and count the gifts of grace Jesus gives makes the pace a bit slower so you can truly focus on what is right here and now, gifts from His hand…

660. Today is our 35th wedding anniversary. I have been a tad emotional about celebrating this milestone. Why does it seem that events that end in “0” or “5” are more special? God has certainly blessed my sweet Gary and me all these years.  We were so young and so in love. Then…and now…

661. The very first time Gary and I laid eyes on each other was when my family and I visited the little Baptist church where he was leading worship at the age of 17. We were high school sweethearts and began dating the summer before our senior year of high school.
662. Here we are on our wedding day, June 11, 1977…when 35 years ago today I took his hand in mine and promised before God and friends to love him for all time
663. June 10th marked a milestone in my mother-in-law’s life too – her 90th birthday. She is a precious woman and if I can be the mother-in-law to Carrie and Erin that she has been to me, I will be a mighty blessed woman. We celebrated with a big family party – 70+ family members came and honored the Morton Matriarch.

664. Here she is as a young bride herself…I love this picture, and I’m very thankful for her faithful love to me and her testimony as a woman who loves the Word of God. She has 5 brothers and four of them were preachers. What a wonderful family I married into…her maiden name is Moody and the family tree has lines to the famous evangelist, D.L. Moody. One of her brothers is named after him.

665. My Dad made his famous passed-down-many-generations-recipe Brunswick Stew for the Maloy Family Reunion this past weekend. He recently shared the recipe with my youngest son Jonathan. I love to hear my parents share stories of their growing up years. I sent this picture to both my sisters and for some reason we all got teary-eyed. For all his gruff “former Marine” ways, our father still has a big old tender heart. This making of the stew is a special memory for him of his own father and grandfather.
666. Baptism at the beach. Our young people just returned home from their annual beach retreat and they celebrated this year with something never done before – baptism on site in the ocean…what a testimony. I pray the foks who witnessed this will be touched and blessed. So proud of Pastor Mike and his wife Julie, and Pastor Ben and his wife Leia.
667. I planted these while calla lily bulbs last year and then forgot about them – they blessed and suprised me this year. I love white flowers.
668. We have been blessed with wonderful rains the past week. I love the way the water drops look on this daylily, it seems refreshed. My blog header has the verse from Isaiah 58:11…may your soul be as a well-watered garden. A favorite passage of mine.
669. An impromptu visit to my office last week by my little granddaughter Madie Ruth. She stayed with me for about 20 minutes while her brother finished his swimming lesson. It was a mixup in schedules for my son and his wife, but a pure delight to me. Living close to my boys and their wives and grandchildren is a DAILY blessing that I count. (I got this picture from Facebook, it was taken while she was at her other grandma’s house, and I know Mrs. Catharine is happy to live close to the grandchildren too…)
670. While driving home from Memama’s 90th birthday party we went through a town called Porterdale.  Many of my dad’s sisters worked in this old cotton mill. It was a thriving mill for many years and my dad’s father worked there too. I love the history of this town. My Granny attended the Porterdale Baptist Church. I was born not too far from this little town.
671. My youngest son and his wife celebrated four years of marriage on June 7th. When your children are blessed and happy in the homes they leave yours for…there are no words adequate enough to express the JOY this brings. Pray for your children’s spouses…no matter how young your children are.
672.  Peaches, peanuts and pecans – I love these homegrown Georgia products.  The farm across the road from us is growing peanuts this year. We took a basket of peaches to my mother-in-law on Saturday, at her request. 🙂
673. And I’m growing green beans and they are so plentiful. You know I can’t have a post without something from my garden…I’ve shared the green beans with many already.
674. There is a part of me that wonders if I am old (or thought to be “old”) since I’ve been married 35 years? Most days I don’t feel old, and I certainly enjoy being around people of all ages, so I’m not “set in my ways” (yet).  This I do know – growing old is a gift from our Lord and our lives are in His Hands. Eternal life is the greatest grace gift I will ever count and I hope you know that He is yours and you are His. I want to grow old gracefully. I pray about that often.



1,000 GIFTS, #595 to #614

This Multitude Monday finds me at peace and I can say with confidence this counting has much to do with my restful countenance.  Twenty Twelve is passing quickly to me, how about you?
595.  My Wednesday night Bible study class completed our study of the book of James. We were a weepy mess that last night…what a gift that study was to us. I love this fourteenth verse from the fourth chapter (this is the Amplified version).  Read it and ponder the brevity of our lives. Rest in the assurance that our Blessed Controller has everything well in control.
Yet you do not know [the least thing] about what may happen tomorrow.
What is the nature of your life? You are [really] but a wisp of vapor
(a puff of smoke, a mist) that is visible for a little while
and then disappears [into thin air].
596. I wrote my last post from the Metro Worship Conference. It was a gift from God to be there and I am thankful for our church that supports that time away for my husband. Texas was wonderful – great weather and great hospitality from the host pastors there.  These next round of counted blessings were truly that to me, unexpected gifts.
597. The days were long and full as we went from “daylight to dark” every day – but there was time for fun too, like when I got up close to this TX Longhorn. When he turned to walk through the gate, he tipped his head to get his horns through. It tickled me. We all need to “adapt.”
598. I loved seeing these young people who put on a “private rodeo” for us. They were so gracious and lined the fence and wished us all well. So refreshing.
599. Hymns have been a part of my life as far back as I can remember. I have memories of my parental grandmother singing hymns and playing the piano. We were blessed to hear Keith & Kristyn Getty in concert. “The Power of the Cross,” and “In Christ Alone” are two of my all-time favorites. The Gettys are modern hymn writers – what a grace gift.
600. One of the sweetest gifts of all for me was meeting the sweet Mrs. Sheri Bell. Her husband is the Worship Pastor at the amazing Prestonwood Baptist Church in Plano. He was our gracious host all week. Sheri and I just “hit it off,” and had so much in common (besides being married to music men). We both love gardening. Because of that…
601. We loved our time together at the Dallas Arboretum walking and enjoying the beautiful gardens. She planned so many wonderful things for us that week.
602. And a highlight for my soul was the JOY of hearing Sheila Walsh as she spoke to us worship pastors’ wives. She is so genuine and so kind. Her message really stirred me up and I’m thankful for the stirring and the tender mercies of Jesus. 
603. Our last night at the Metro Conference was a “NIGHT OF WORSHIP.” Have you ever seen such a choir? They sang and then Pastor Jack Graham called all the worship pastors and wives down to the front of the church and prayed over us – it was one of the sweetest times ever. His Grace was thick in that place.
604. So blessed to attend the wedding of the son of long-time friends at our home church when we returned home.  Thankful for Christian & Olivia as they start their lives together in Christ. Hope and grace for the next generation.
605. Gardening joys as Spring continues…green beans, tomatoes, butter peas, cucumbers, green peppers, zucchini and yellow squash!
606. Jasmine blooming over my swing is especially sweet…
607. The first hydrangea – what an awesome Creator to bless us with such beauty…
608. A Blueberry bounty and my grandchildren LOVE them. It is so fun to go out to the garden with them and pick fresh blueberries. A simple JOY, but that is what I love. I picked a quart just tonight…

609. Jackson’s JOY at every tractor, especially his Pop’s…

610. I am so thankful for my pastor and his family. They began their ministry with us on the first day of this year and I can truthfully say that God graced our church when He brought them into our lives. I made these little ladybug shirts for his girls this past weekend. His wife has a blog that blesses me so much! Visit Stephanie at her blog here.

611. Dinner out last week with the “Rincon Retreat” girls. Just sweet fellowship – no agendas other than celebrating the bond of women’s ministry.
612. Farm and country living is grand – critters everywhere.  The “farm cat” brought us a surprise day before yesterday…her kittens. There are four of them and they are wild as can be, but oh so cute…they are hiding behind my hydrangea bushes. I need a cat whisperer. I know where the term “hissy fit” comes from now…we will NOT keep them!
613. Thankful for the gift to celebrate my Dad’s birthday yesterday. My sister Jo had us all over for Sunday dinner, it was so good. I’m thankful for my Dad. He is a wonderful father, grandfather, and great-grandfather. A proud Career Marine, Vietnam War Veteran and my dad.
614. My last gift to count on this Multitude Monday is so dear to my heart that I can barely contain my excitement. I began this blog “Gran Jan’s JOY” almost four years ago while awaiting the joy of becoming Gran Jan.  We found out last week that grandbaby #4 is…
Praise God From WHOM All Blessings Flow
Praise Him All Creatures Here Below
Praise Him Above Ye Heavenly Host
Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost.


1,000 GIFTS, #509 to #523

As I begin this second half of counting His gifts of grace all around me, I’ve thought about this journey that was begun last February. I’m not the same person I was, all glory to Jesus. I have been stretched in my faith and I wouldn’t trade the lessons learned for anything. I absolutely love this season of life I am in…
509. The deep contentment that comes from a long, steady marriage. I love what my friend Beth Moore has said before that applies to this joy:  “a long walk of obedience in the same direction.”  That long walk of obedience can apply to many areas of our lives…by God’s grace.
510.  The joy of family. I love Saturday morning breakfasts with everyone around the table. There are four generations here…my parents, me and my husband, my sons and their wives and our grandchildren. I was sitting by my mom and Zeke before I stepped away to take this picture…
511. Impromptu gatherings. This Valentine’s night supper last week at a local pizza restaurant was so much fun. I love my boys and their wives & the grandchildren so much – thankful to spend this “day of love” with them for a meal.

512.  Kissing Cousins. Sweet Madie grabbing a kiss from sweet Jackson… She had just told me to “take her picture.”  These two grandchildren are 2 weeks to the day apart in age. JOY!

513.  Blueberry pancakes are always on the table. Looking forward to June when our blueberries are in season again.
514.  Today…a holiday from work called “President’s Day,” is so welcome to me. I am committed to pray for this election year as we seek a new President. This scripture from Daniel 2:20-22 comforts me in these days of uncertainty in our country…
Blessed be the name of God forever and ever,
For wisdom and might are His.
And He changes the times and the seasons;
He removes kings and raises up kings;
He gives wisdom to the wise
And knowledge to those who have understanding.
He reveals deep and secret things;
He knows what is in the darkness,
And light dwells with Him.
515. Late afternoon sun breaking through the clouds.
516. When our former minister resigned (December 2010), our church went through an interim time in search of a new senior pastor. [I wrote about our new pastor in this past last November.  We are so blessed by the awesome expository preaching of our pastor Dr. Jim Perdue. He is a shepherd to us.] Before Pastor Jim came, God blessed us with a wonderful interim pastor – Rev. Joel Southerland. We honored the Southerland family at church yesterday and then had a big old churchwide fellowship last night! EVERYONE was talking about the sweetness of the Spirit in our midst. This is Brother Joel & his precious wife Sherryde. God blessed our hearts with this couple and their girls Savana and Mikayla. They will always be part of our lives as they were instruments of love and healing in our church. We love y’all.
Wall to wall fellowship at SBCWR…
517. Sweet Miss Madie and her Hollywood entrace to the family breakfast this past Saturday…this girl does not meet a stranger.
518. Jackson loves loves loves tractors, big trucks, motorcycles, anything with wheels. This is my Dad’s big John Deere out in the hay barn. They stopped there on their way out this past Saturday. Jackson has to see the moo cows and chickens…and the tractors.
519. My best friend Lanie is making a quilt called “What Cancer Cannot Do.” I wept tears of joy and thankfulness to God when she showed the finished quilt top to me last week. This is the quilt label…how I praise God for sparing her life. (Teal is the color for ovarian cancer.) She encourages all women to have their annual physicals. That is when her cancer was discovered.  One of the quotes on the quilt top says, “Cancer cannot destroy friendship.”  Amen my sweet friend.
520. Right now as I type this, there is a big fire in this new firepit my husband purchased. It has 3 Willows Farm cut out on the rim in two places. We love living in the country with redneck firepits made from big old recycled propane tanks…we are going green here at the farm.
521. My oldest son Jeremy and his wife Carrie took their two children, Zeke and Madie, to go see Memama Morton this morning. She is their great-grandmother and my precious mother-in-law. She will be 90 in June and is the matriarch of our family…a godly woman who has taught me so much. I love her dearly. We enjoyed a long visit with her this past Friday evening.
522. For some reason my 3 grandchildren love my pantry. Maybe it’s the Spiderman and Dora snacks that I keep there. 🙂  
523. I love to browse seed catalogs and think of the delicious fresh vegetables we will enjoy from my garden this summer.  In fact, I need to head outside now and PRUNE back the rosebushes and crepe myrtles. 

As I mentioned at the beginning of this post – I wouldn’t take anything for the journey of my life this past year, the PRUNING has been hard, but oh so necessary for growth. Thank you Jesus.

 John 15:1-2 (Amplified Version)
I AM the True Vine, and My Father is the Vinedresser.
Any branch in Me that does not bear fruit [that stops bearing]
 He cuts away (trims off, takes away); and He cleanses and
 repeatedly prunes every branch that continues to bear fruit,
to make it bear more and richer and more excellent fruit.



1,000 GIFTS, #463 to #478

463. I love my church. I love the people. They are family. Second Baptist Church, Warner Robins GA is my church HOME. My husband has served on staff there almost 24 years (June 1st). We raised our boys there – they were both saved and baptized there. I have a grandson there now – how awesome is that? On Wednesdays I head there straight from work to teach Bible study. This week I was blessed at the sight of the late winter sun shining on the steeple. Thank you Jesus for Your Light and this light in the community.
464. And I love my oldest son’s church too. He pastors Cross Point Baptist Church and is a mighty fine son, brother, husband, daddy, and preacher. I am most blessed to be his mom. I would sure love to hear him preach in person more often, but I’m thankful for their podcast. Also thankful he and his wife and my two oldest grandchildren are close by.
465. And here are those two babies sporting their “dinosaur” shirts I made for them. They were headed to Mother’s Morning Out and I’m grateful to my sweet daughter-in-law for taking the time to share this picture with Gran Jan.
466. My youngest son hosts an annual BBQ for his friends in January. It was last weekend. Jonathan has always had a lot of friends. (Here he is in our “barn,” getting ready for the feast.) He is a good man to have for a friend. He is also a wonderful son, husband, daddy, and brother.  It is pure JOY to be his mom.
467. My dad is a great cook and he loves to cook. (Reference gift #457.) He and Jonathan (above) spent the day before the Friends BBQ making my dad’s family recipe of southern Brunswick Stew. The stew was delicious but I love even more that they made a memory and dad passed down that tradition. They even cooked it in an old cast iron pot that belonged to my dad’s dad. Priceless to me.
468.  My church hosted the Bailey Smith Real Evangelism Conference this past weekend. I’m thankful for the legacy of this great man and thankful for the pastors and wives that were encouraged by the conference.  Our choir sang Wednesday night and it was a JOY.

469. Evangelist Bill Stafford is one of the heroes of our family. He preached in the conference that I just mentioned above. God has used this man to teach me about the Christ Life, about stewardship and about selflessness. I have not arrived by any means, but I’m thankful for this saint who is nearing 80 years old. Thankful for pastors and evangelists of his generation. May God raise up more mighty men like these.

470. There was another great conference this past week that I was supposed to attend, but I just knew I needed to be home for the event at my own church.  SSMTC (Siesta Scripture Memory Team Celebration) was the culmination of a year-long scripture memory committment through Living Proof Ministries. I participated in the first event in Houston back in 2010 after memorizing all year in 2009.  I thank God for the power of His Word – this grace gift NEVER stops giving.
471. I’m thankful that even though I could not attend, the tender hearted teacher in Beth Moore made a way for the event to be streamed live. Thank you God and may you bless the staff at Living Proof Ministries for this precious gift to us. I watched Saturday morning on my laptop.
472. These are two dear friends of mine from AL and TN that attended the SSMTC. We met through the ministry of the BLOG and outreach of Living Proof Ministries. Truly. They are dear to me. Genuine friends who I can contact at the reach of an iPhone. 🙂  Thankful for technology in this generation, and especially Hey Tell 🙂 Right girls?
473. Although I could not attend the SSMTC I wanted to share my JOY in my spiral of verses for 2011. I can literally see God’s Hand at work through the progression of the year and the Word that ministered to my heart. I love God’s Word. I encourage you to begin a memory plan if you’re not already doing so. It will be LIFE to you. 
474. Red cowboy boots on a list of gifts? You betcha! My sweet husband gave me these when I turned 40 (just a wee bit ago). 🙂 I wore these to let my friends at SSMTC 2012 know I was with them in Texas spirit on Friday. 🙂
475. This is my 365 Day Picture app on my iPhone. You simply take a picture for every day of the year to capture your year in photos. Technology is a wonderful thing when kept in its proper place. God’s Word tells us in James 4:14 that life is but a vapor. I can honestly say that I count every day on this Earth as a gift from the Good Lord. I’m savoring them.
476. Thankful for doctors who take care of little boys when they don’t feel well. My daughter-in-law sent me this picture of sweet Jackson boy on the way home from the doctor yesterday. Thankful for God’s healing in our lives, physically and spiritually. They stopped to get him a Sonic fruit slush – how precious is that?
477. Thankful again for the joy of handwork and the way it calms my busyness and centers my heart. I made this for my little granddaughter for Valentine’s Day. She called me last night and told me she was praying for me (via her daddy’s coaching). I can’t wait to give this to her.
478. I came home from work one evening last week to see two of the most important men in my life (besides my sons and grandsons) laying out a plan to plant 35 pecan trees here at the farm.  My husband and my Dad. Thankful thankful thankful for them.
Sweet blog readers! Thank you for your comments and for your support. I pray your week goes well and you can see His Grace Gifts through your daily lives. He is ever present even when you don’t realize that truth. That is the joy of counting these gifts – you see them EVERYWHERE and you become more aware than ever of the simplicity of life at a slower pace, sensitive to His Voice and Spirit. I’m learning – sojourning.

Giveaway ~ Happy New Year!

Back in the fall of 2010 I discovered some of the most worshipful, soothing, calming, peaceful, wonderful music through an email recommendation I received from Jennifer Rothschild’s ministry. (I love her Women’s Ministry Website.) I wrote a post about the music here.

Well – a new CD has been released by Breakaway Music: “Hidden in My Heart, Volume II.”  Visit this link to listen to Scripture Lullabies.  If you like what you hear, come back and leave a comment about how God has used MUSIC to bless you…in your quiet time, in worship, at church – any way He has used the ministry of music to your heart.

 I ordered two of the new CD’s and I
want to give one away!

As a worship pastor’s wife of 34 plus years, I can tell you that I am so thankful to our Heavenly Father for His gift of music.  Please leave your comment by January 31st.  I will randomly draw for a winner and announce it here on my blog.

Happy New Year!