The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Counting my blessings this Thanksgiving


November 17, 2017

I am so grateful this Thanksgiving season. Many times we have blessings in our lives and we just consider them “givens.”

“Given” to me has meant ordinary things, everyday things that most of us have. Many times I have taken those for granted.

But this year is different. I have decided that all I glean, all my blessings, those many things in my life no longer fit into the “given” category for me. The following is a list of 12 things I am thankful for this Thanksgiving. The first six I have never considered as “givens” but at times I have taken even those for granted.

• One: I am I am thankful for Jesus, my Lord, Savior, and Sustainer. His mercies are really new every morning. Lamentations 3:22-23 reads: “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”

• Two: I am thankful for heaven. I know and have full confidence that I will be reunited someday with those who have gone before me. Jesus himself said: “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in me shall never die.” (John 11:25) I believe Jesus.

• Three: I am thankful that God has given me a purpose in life and I am totally fulfilled and very satisfied in that purpose. Jesus promised this. In the New International Version translation of the Bible Jesus said: “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matthew 6:33) The Message, which is a paraphrase of the Bible, states part of that Scripture in this way: “Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, and God-provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met.” What wonderful promise.

• Four: I am thankful for my family; my children and grandchildren bring an abundance of overflowing love and support into my life.

• Five: I am thankful for our family’s health.

• Six: I am thankful for friends who surround me with encouragement and caring hearts.

Yet there are some other things I am thankful for and have at times taken the following for granted.

• Seven: I am thankful I can read and I am thankful for my Bible. I am thankful that I can read it each day, carry it with me and freely quote from its pages. Not everyone has this liberty. In the world today, there are approximately 1 billion adults who cannot read in their own language. If they can read, it is difficult to get a Bible in their own language.

• Eight: I am thankful that I can worship freely in the church of my choice. This is not true in every country. According to “Christianity Today,” for a third year in a row, the modern persecution of Christians worldwide has hit another record high.

• Nine: I am thankful for good eyes to be able to see the faces of each of my family and to see the beauty of God’s world. Many do not have this ability. The estimated number of people visually impaired in the world is 285 million — 39 million are blind.

• Ten: I am thankful that I have easy access to nourishing food. This is not so with everyone. One in six people in America face hunger. Even sadder is that 13 million children in America do not get the proper food they need.

• Eleven: I am thankful for good water to drink. Again, many do not have this basic luxury. About 844 million people in the world do not have access to clean drinking water.

• Twelve: I am thankful for a home. About 565,000 people in the United States are literally homeless.

So what are you thankful for this Thanksgiving?

Judy Brandon writes about faith for The Eastern New Mexico News. Contact her at:


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