Thursday, November 27

This day of Thanksgiving

I realize, in my attempt to cover each and every blessing that I have received, that I may have miss sending this thanksgiving email to some of my blessings called is my hope that I'll catch some of you that I've missed posting it here.

May God, who is the source of all of our thankful blessings, be with you and yours as you gather together this day.

In peaceful contemplation of the journey home,

It is the beginning of the 'holiday season' and soon most of us will gather around the table with family and/or friends to enjoy some good food, good fellowship, and good rememberances of those things that we, as Americans and as believers, can be thankful for.

As I look back upon the year that has passed between last Thanksgiving and the coming one, I am amazed of all the changes that have taken place and the journey that has zigged-zagged through the landscape of this life. Some of it very sad, with consequences and results still playing themselves out in my life. It seems a few times, a unfortunately small few, were good things….monumental moments in the passage through this life…..funny, it is the sad times I treasure the most and am most thankful this holiday. In those moments when I didn't know what to do, where to go, and how to get there……God spoke, either directly or through one of His many children who have surrounded me in this journey home.

This Thanksgiving, as is my usual thought; I give thanks once again for the hope given, realized and etched in my very being, that comes from the sacrifice made by Jesus Christ upon the cross of wood and iron for all of us, even a wretch like me, so that once and for all the punishment of sin would be washed away through the blood given so that we could share in His inheritance.

I am thankful for those times that drew my faults and my sins to the surface, and the powerful healing given through the edification of others to repent and ask forgiveness for those things, for my brother Larry, for Kristina, and others. I am thankful for those times that drew me into realization of God's strength and mercy, and what He has given for me to do.

I give thanks for the ability to give love; whether returned or not… appreciate the people in my life for what they are (children of God) rather than what they do. I give thanks for the devotions I read, the ministers who wrote them, and the ones who have read mine. I give thanks for Pastors Bright, Cramer, Bauer, and Combs who have preached the Gospel in times such as these.

I give thanks for the brothers and sisters would stood with me in the troubling times of the past year; it is not the financial blessings that were given that gave the most blessing to me nor the other things that were freely given to the needs of me and my children. No, the blessing was so far greater than silver or gold…..God enabled me through the giving to learn to be truly blessed by the love and concern of others. To realize the depth of their faith, realized in their actions, and to overcome my pride to be humble in the acceptance. That is a greater blessing than any other. I look eagerly to the day when I can forward the blessings given on to another in such a position as I.

I give thanks for the brothers and sisters who have lifted me and my kids up in prayer, for the effect of having the multitudes echoing my cries of supplication to the Heavens was indeed heard by our Father and enabled my voice to lift up other's cries of supplication in return, strong and clear, as they were submitted to the will of the Father. There has been sorrow and joy in the prayers of the faithful this year, and I am glad for each tear cried and each victory fists raised in each and every one of those prayers I was blessed to be a part of.

I give thanks for the teachers in the schools, who brought the highest level of educating my children into their classrooms, for those I have known and those I have not. For the school systems of Walled Lake, and Holly……and those who daily give of themselves to ensure the generations to come.

I give thanks for the family that I still know and talk to at Orchard Grove Community Church, for those I knew at Soul Quest, and for the brothers and sisters that I am growing to know and love within the body at The River in Holly. God is on His throne and blessing each and every one of those who endeavour through to realize the mission that has been handed through the generations since the Twelve…..GO and preach the Gospel……

I give thanks for the brothers at Out of the Wild, though I have not met face to face with any of them….it isn't hard to imagine what that meeting would be like…..true brothers fighting for the cause of God, seeking and growing as men of God. Andrew, Garry, Matt, and a host of others have listened to the journey I've been on and cheered from afar, though loud enough to hear through the countryside!

I give thanks and humble appreciation for the experiences at M3, the men's ministry of Awakened Hearts (which became a full-time ministry this year). The message, calling men to be men of God….and showing them how, has been an increasingly disruptive thing…in a great and wonderfully powerful way, as I reach for that goal with both hands…..coming closer to God so I can see what He made me to be. For Scott, who is an powerful, impactful, and humbly real leader…speaking not for his own glory, but shining the light of God's truth through his words, actions, and teaching. For Mark, who quietly moves in the circles of men, encouraging and edifying….and making more impact than mere fellowship could ever have. For all the men who gather once a month at Able Men….brothers who by their very presense are strong warriors with tender hearts who move in a world broken for the sake of God's mission.

There are many other blessings and many other people that I could name by name and spend many hours naming specific times or actions where they have blessed me, blessed my kids, or blessed others who have impacted me…….but this is a quick email to remind us all of where our thanks-giving should lie….and that we all, not just on Thanksgiving, but each and every time….give our thanks to those who bless, bless those who give thanks, and seek out the ways that God invites us to bring others to the place of true thanksgiving.

As you gather around the table this Thanksgiving day, or travel delivering meals to those unable to have one, or reach out to your neighbor in fellowship; be a blessing to those near.

And remember those who are far away from home this Thanksgiving; those troops who spend thankless hours defending a country struggling to be free and realize its potential. Remember those who are home; broken by war's ravagings, and gave a bit of themselves for the sake of another. Remember those who have gone to their eternal home, spilling the blood of patriotic duty upon the tree of freedom for a people who never knew freedom's warm embrace. If you know a veteran this Thanksgiving that's near, simply say "Thank you" and they'll shine like a beacon in the darkest night; for their service was truly appreciated.

Remember those families who have lost jobs, homes, and possessions this Thanksgiving. Cherish the example they've set as they've kept their families together and faithfully struggled through the trials and tribulations that have been placed in their paths.

Remember the outgoing President, George Bush, who executed the office of the President of the United States for eight years. Remember with thanksgiving his faithful service and the ability to forgive his mistakes.

Remember President-elect Barrack Obama, the first African-American President. Give thanks that our political process still works and that the people still have a voice. Even if you didn't elect Obama, give thanks that our voice can still be heard as our new President takes this country through the difficult times ahead. Give thanks that we can lift him and his family up in prayerful supplication to the Lord and King.

Humbly, I submit to each of you, my thanks for all that you have done; for God, for the kingdom, and for me. No matter how material, or how spiritual that work was….I am thankful that I can bow before my Father and give heartful thanks for each and every one of you to His listening ears. And no matter if we don't meet or meet on a regular basis, I thank you for the ability to lift you up to our Father in praise…….

In Christ,

James Hutson

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