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Yes, I’m thankful 

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I know yesterday was Thanksgiving, but you’re still eating leftovers so it’s safe to broach the topic of thanks.

Actually, we need to be more thankful every day. Especially those of us who know Jesus Christ as our Savior. 

When I think of the family I could have been born into, and had a mom and dad who didn’t think church was important … I just get cold chills. 

My grandparents were involved in church, too. I am grateful. My dad joined the Navy and my parents married. They were away from home living in California. I really doubt church was important at that time to them. Mom was working at a hospital and often worked so she wouldn’t be lonely on weekends or holidays. She made sure other people with families could be at home.

When I was just three months old, they loaded up a new car and off went the three of us to Tyler, Texas. That’s where my father planned to continue the electronics education he received while serving. 

Bob Jacobs from Central Baptist Church always visited people who recently moved to the city by the list of water hook-ups. I’m not really sure of the details and how long it took mom and dad to start going, but they eventually did. Wow. I’m so grateful. 

What if no one had ever invited them to church? They didn’t know a soul in that community and their family was back in the Springfield, Missouri area.

When they got involved — it was all in. We were in church Sunday morning and night, Wednesday night and they went on visitation. I played with my friends or watched the pastor’s wife play the piano during choir practice. They were both involved in teaching Sunday School, helping with the kids choir … whatever needed to be done. They even volunteered their time and Suburban to take teens to Mexico for a missions trip. 

Wow they loved missionaries that came through to report to the church, too. At one time, a family was sharing the needs they had on the field and they needed to buy a bed when they returned to Peru. I visited the same missionary as an adult with a group of teens. The missionaries proudly pointed out the bed my parents had sent money for them to purchase —  possibly 40 years earlier. What a blessing … and the seed they planted even though they never got to visit Lima, Peru.

That love for missionaries was definitely passed on to me and my husband. When we were planning to marry, I thought I was marrying a missionary to Australia. But God changed that desire while in Bible College. But the love and support of missionaries never dwindled in our hearts.

We have a lot to be thankful for. Even though our sons saw the good and bad of ministry, they each answered “yes” when God called them into ministry. Notice I typed “God called them.” It wasn’t a momma or daddy call. That wouldn’t give them what they needed when times would get tough. 

So I’m very thankful they are raising our grandchildren in church and I love to hear stories of their kids helping the ministry. I’m sure there are some moans and groans when it comes to physical labor and helping around church … but “they get it.” They know eternity waits for their friends from the neighborhood and school. They know the difference Jesus Christ can make in a family’s life.

Last, but not least, I’m thankful for my job at the Harrison Daily Times. I may have to blow that section up really large and tape it to the screen of my computer. Because all days are not fun. 

We are having to learn a new software program to load our stories in the system for the page builders. We have at least seven additional steps to remember for every story. That’s not easy with a deadline looming. But I’m thankful my computer worked today. I’m thankful I have fingers to type and sometimes I have a brain with me at work —  but not all the time!

I’m very thankful for the people and businesses that I’ve been able to meet in the 23 plus years I’ve worked here. I’ve been able to do some crazy activities and see the behind the scenes that most people never get to experience. I’ve had a private tour inside the Table Rock Dam Power Plant. Those massive turbines were so interesting and when I was walking at the top of the spillway, it was scary. But get used to heights because here comes Rotary and pushes me out of a perfectly good airplane at 10,000 feet!

I really love being inside our manufacturing plants. I appreciate what it takes to make a hardwood floor for the trailer of a semi-truck (which I’ve driven now, too.) I love the technology involved in seeing a box constructed from a computer screen to a massive sheet of cardboard and the huge printer that prints faster than I can blink my eyes. It becomes a box for shotgun shells or Twinkies. So interesting. Take a box apart sometime and completely flatten it out. Then think about the people who manufactured that box.

The process of making fiberglass tanks is also very interesting. Especially the unique lining they have to manufacture if it is scheduled to contain a corrosive material like salsa! (And of course, more dangerous chemicals, too.)

Thank you for hanging with me on Fridays. This column is fun to write (sometimes scary) when I know you enjoy reading it. I’m grateful for you and Happy Thanksgiving a day late!

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