Tag Archives: thankfulness

Why Can’t I Sleep, Lord?

Why Can’t I Sleep, Lord?

At the moment I am being blessed with wonderful periods of sleep. That is not always the case. I have thought about the reasons and have a few suggestions for the nights when sleep eludes you.

sleep

I read Philip Yancey’s article in Grace Notes today. He talks about signs from God and how he sees the signs very clearly after he’s made the decision or move. One time he didn’t know whether to take a management position or stay in writing and editing. He opted for the management. Time and again he couldn’t sleep. Then he tried an experiment; one week he would do management and one week he would write. He slept very well while doing the writing assignments. Finally, he decided to leave the management position and has slept well since. He finally heeded God’s voice.

I know what Yancey means. My hubby wasn’t sleeping well a number of years ago. His physical and mental health took a beating. We decided we needed to sell our company. We did and guess what? –  he started sleeping again.

All non-sleeping problems are not necessarily signs from God. Some people have trouble sleeping because of physical ailments, children, pregnancy, etc.

But discounting any of these reasons I believe God tries to tell me something when I can’t sleep.

Here are some of the things God tells me when I can’t sleep:

      • Janis, you did something yesterday that is not making Me [Jesus] happy. Think over your day, figure it out and make amends.
      • Janis, I need you to wake up and pray. You didn’t take time during the day so now is the time. Wake up.
      • Janis, a few things you said today were not of My [Jesus] liking. Think over your day – were your thoughts as pure as I want them? Acknowledge this and ask my forgiveness.
      • Janis, I think you need to rethink what you are doing. Are you really following My leading or your own? Check over your plans – see if they are My plans. (this could be concerning family, friends, job).

Have you had sleepless nights? Is God talking to you? Listen and see. (click to tweet)

One great way to go to sleep or fall asleep after waking up is to count your blessings. Go over your day and see God at work; thank Him and praise Him for all He is doing.

Here is a wonderful song that I sing when I can’t sleep – from White Christmas.

Prayer:

Thank You, Lord, for using our sleeping times to keep tabs on us. Help us to recognize our non-sleep as You talking. Help us to listen to what You tell us. In Your Name, Jesus, we pray. AMEN.

Janis Cox

Janis is a creativity catalyst with a heart to connect people to God. She specializes in creating art based on Scripture so that the Truth penetrates hearts and not just minds.The world needs more pictures, art and colour.

God speaks through our creativity. We connect deeply with God through creativity because it is play. Our doubts fall away. We become like the little children Jesus invited to Himself. Janis helps people play, connect to God and connect to each other. Honest simple reminders to remain rooted in Him.

Sign up for a free Bible Art Course coming soon.

sleep

 

Thoughtful Tuesdays – How we can make joy bubble over

Thoughtful Tuesdays – How we can make joy bubble over

bubbles-joy-web

My thoughts during the bout of flu were “how can I make this joyful”? During that time I tried to pray but really felt so bad I couldn’t do it. But I did read my Scriptures, and some blog posts. I did sing praise songs while soaking in the tub. I found I could accept what was happening if I just rested in God and thanked Him for little things.

It reminded me of the years that I would count the gifts. Ann Voskamp has a wonderful site where she encourages us to count the gifts, daily. I did that and now have many posts to show those weeks. Check out Counting Gifts.

And Margaret Feinberg has written a book and Bible study to show us how to Fight Back with Joy.

So my little picture came to me as I thought of joy. Joy that bubbles over. If we can have that joy – then others will see it. And they will be led to wanting to know more about Jesus.

I am creating something new in you: a bubbling spring of Joy that spills over into other’s lives. Do not mistake this Joy for you own or try to take credit for it in any way. Instead, watch in delight as My Spirit flows through you to bless others (Sarah Young, Jesus Calling, June 13).

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, JOY, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness (Galatians 5:22, NIV, my emphasis).

 

I learned a song while in Poland. The English words are:

Jesus’ love is bubbling over.
Jesus’ love is bubbling over.
Jesus’ love is bubbling over.
Hallelujah!

Have a great week.

Blessings,

Janis

Tweetable:

Be thankful so the JOY of Christ can bubble over in you. (click to tweet)

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Janis is the author of the award winning children’s book, Tadeo Turtle, published by Word Alive Press. Available in Kindle Format, in bookstores, online and from her website. Curriculum available upon request.

Tadeo-Turtle-Cover-large-web

You can find her on Facebook, and Twitter. Tadeo has his own Facebook Page.

 

 

 

#UTCOP – Remember to add thankfulness to your prayers

Remember to add thankfulness to your prayers

by Kimberley Payne

How-to-pray-using-the-PATH-to-prayer

“Make thankfulness your sacrifice to God” (Psalm 50:14, NIV).

 

“But giving thanks is a sacrifice that truly honors me” (Psalm 50:23, NIV).

 

I want to honour God and one way I can do this is by giving Him thanks.

Remember to try the acronym P.A.T.H. when you pray. The “T” is for thankfulness.

Praise, Admit, THANK, Help

Tweetable:

Use P.A.T.H. to help you pray. Read @fitforfaith’s post. “T” is for thankfulness. (tweet this)

Kimberley Payne

Kimberley is a motivational speaker and author. Her writings relate raising a family, pursuing a healthy lifestyle, and everyday experiences to building a relationship with God. Through her work, Kimberley hopes to inspire people to live lives that glorify God. You can visit her website at www.kimberleypayne.com

What are The Icks?

What are The Icks ?

by Brenda Wood

Moses_Red_Sea_JPEG_1024-web

Thanks to free bible images.org – Words are Brenda Wood’s

I laughed out loud when I saw the cartoon.  The Israelites were in the centre of a major miracle, crossing the Red Sea on dry ground as banks of water towered over their heads. One person looked down and cried, “Ick! A fish!”  

It made me think of the lovely party I had attended the day before. Unfortunately I was seated beside an “Ick”. The food was too spicy,  her children never visited, and so on…..and so on…….and so on….!

It only takes one doesn’t it? One negative crank whose negative comments spoil a party. One undisciplined child who will have what it wants or else. One seeker of all that is negative quickly poisons the attitude of a crowd.

Only a few months after the Red Sea crossing Moses found himself leading an entire crowd of “Icks”, each and every one polluted with the spirit of complaining.

The whole company of Israel complained against Moses and Aaron there in the wilderness. (Exodus 16:2, The Message).

Any “Icks” where we live? God forbid that any of them would be us! By the way, the tried and true method of tuning Icks into Likes is prayer.

May God help us catch His vision instead of looking for herring and catfish along our path.

Tweetable:

Any “Icks” where we live? God forbid that any of them would be us! (tweet this)

May God help us catch His vision instead of looking for herring and catfish along our path. (tweet this)

Brenda J. Wood

A popular motivational speaker, Brenda, of Barrie, Ontario is known for her common sense wisdom, sense of humour and quirky comments. Brenda especially enjoys speaking at women’s retreats and conferences, community events, Mops, World Day of Prayer, and Stonecroft Ministries.

A prolific author, her current books include:

The Big Red Chair: a children’s book dealing with the loss of a grandparent.
Meeting Myself: Snippets from a Fractured Mind:  the author’s recovery from abuse and eating disorders.
Hearts Under Construction: A motivational cookbook designed to feed both body and soul
Heartfelt: 366 Devotions for Common Sense Living.
God, Gluttony and You: a Bible Study dealing with our relationship to food.
Read more at:
http://heartfeltdevotionals.wordpress.com
facebook – www.facebook.com/brendawoodspeaker

How to be Thankful Throughout the Year

How to Be Thankful Throughout the Year

by Stephanie Nickel

How-to-be-thankful

One of my Facebook friends took a challenge in 2013 to list 1,200 reasons to be thankful. When my mother-in-law gave me a journal for Christmas, it didn’t take long to decide what I would use it for.

I got a jump start and listed the first 100 reasons in December.

If you need a little direction, below are some ideas to get you started:

January

The first month of the year is typically a month of new beginnings. What “new beginnings” are you thankful for? (i.e.: the events surrounding your new birth in Christ; the start of your family; new jobs; new homes; etc.)

February

The month the world is focused on love is a great time to think of the people you love. Don’t just list their names. Also list specifics about what you love and appreciate about them. (You may even want to take the time to touch base with them and let them know they’re on your mind and in your prayers.)

March

No matter how you feel about winter, you may be getting tired of the cold, grey days. Recording why you’re thankful for winter can help turn your thinking around.  (i.e.: clothes, a warm home, places to go even though you have to brave the elements, your favourite hot drink, etc.)

April

Springtime, a time when new life bursts forth in the Northern Hemisphere, is a wonderful time to look to creation and thank the Lord for things you may not usually notice. (I never watched the progress of budding trees before my hubby pointed them out to me.)

May

The nicer weather is upon us. Like a warm hug, it reminds us of those things that bring us a sense of peace and security. What a great springboard for gratitude!

June

School is winding down for the summer. Parents and teachers are encouraging children to end strong. Let’s think about “the golden years” and ending our lives strong. What are you thankful for now that you’re “older”? If you’re not considered a senior yet, think of those who are. What reasons to be thankful come to mind?

July

Sunshine. Blue skies. Warm weather. What reasons do you have to be thankful this summer – and from summers gone by?

August

August means holiday time for many. Even if you are not able to get away, think about how you can step back from the busyness of the day-to-day and think of the many things there are to be thankful for.

September

Back to school . . . Think back over your years in school. What are you thankful for? Plus, we never stop learning (or we shouldn’t, at least). What new discoveries “blow your mind”?

October

Autumn is my favourite season. I love the colours, the nip in the air, the smell of fallen leaves. It takes me back to my childhood. Childhood memories—though some may be difficult—still bring many reasons to be thankful.

November

I read a very good argument about why we shouldn’t say, “It was a God thing.” Since He is sovereign, everything that comes into our lives was ordained by Him for His purposes. Though it can be extremely difficult to be thankful for challenging situations, it is a wonderful discipline to look for those reasons to praise and thank Him through it all. Trust Him and thank Him for working in even the darkest seasons of life.

December

As the year winds down, why not record 50 things that stand out about 2014 and 50 things you are looking forward to in 2015?

Tweetable:

Find out countless reasons to be thankful. #UTCOP (click to tweet)

Here is a free PDF 0f Countless Reasons to be Thankful if you wish to print out Stephanie’s ideas of how to be thankful.

Steph Beth Nickel

Headshot 1 Stephanie 2013

Steph Beth is a wife of over 30 years and the mother of three grown children. Steph’s eclectic interests include writing, editing, fitness, and childbirth (she is also a labour doula).
Steph’s was honoured to co-author former Paralympian Deb Willows’ memoir. Living Beyond My Circumstances is scheduled for release at the end of November 2013.
Steph edits for Christian Editing Services under the leadership of Karen Burkett. She is a long-time member of The Word Guild and a recent member of InScribe Christian Writers’ Fellowship.

Steph blogs at Steph’s Electic Interests. Her new author website, Steph Beth Nickel , is a work-in-progress.

Have You Said a Thankful Prayer?

To all of our Canadian friends and readers – Happy Thanksgiving. Yes – today is Thanksgiving in Canada. Our post is a reminder to be thankful.

Have You Said a Thankful Prayer?

by Tanya, from God’s Character

Thanks

I find myself in prayer quite often, asking God for lots to things. “Dear God, give me grace”, “…I need…”, “…help me…”; these are phrases I us quite often in many of my prayers. And it is good to constantly come to God in prayer.

But, I noticed something very important; my prayers are mostly me asking God for things. Yes we are to ask God for the desires of our heart and He will grant them to us if it is His will.

But more importantly, we are to be thankful for the blessings
He gives to us all the time.
(tweet this)

I don’t know about you, but I want a thankful heart, a heart that does not focus on the cares of this life and sees only the negative things that affect me.

I want a heart that focuses on God’s blessings,
His goodness and love. 
(tweet this)

Prayer:

Dear Lord, I thank You today for all the blessings you have given to me and my family. Help me to see these blessings always and share You goodness with others as I let them know the good things you have done for me. Amen.

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God (Philippians 4:6, NIV).

Related Posts

 Tanya – from God’s Character

Tanya is a child of God, wife, stay at home mom and homeschooler. She loves the Lord and loves telling people about who He is. By God’s grace her husband and she intend to live out Joshua’s statement “but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord”. And so her greatest desire is to see her Lord face to face and along with her family, join in the joyous strains of triumphant voices praising our Lord and King. Check out her blog at God’s Character.

Can I Joy Dare You? – Week 26

Can I Joy Dare You? Week 26

Can-I-Dare-You-

Butterfly Batik Watercolour by Janis Cox

Don’t forget to follow me by my RSS FeedTwitterFacebook; or Pinterest or email.

Please see the right sidebar for more information.

As I continue to count the gifts I feel like I have been on a scavenger hunt seeking new things. Thanks so much to Ann Voskamp for leading this journey.

Update:

I decided to move the Joy Dare to Wednesdays. I had trouble getting everything posted on Sunday nights. And I have been working hard at not doing work on Sundays. This gives me an evening with my husband too. Please continue to list posts where you are counting the gifts of God.

June 24 ~ a gift in water, in words and in white

      • water: when it is 30 degrees celsius (yes it did get that hot) I need to drink more water and make sure my plants get watered too
      • words: thank You, Lord, for words to write
      • white: beautiful wild white daisies

wild white daisies

 June 25 ~ 3 gifts in someone older than you

      • it is funny but there are less people older than I am!
      • hugs from a friend and a time to chat and yes she is a little older than I am
      • help for VIBE (our VBS). A new friend is helping me but I don’t know her age

June 26 ~ 3 gifts in fabric

      • I picked up more pillow cases for a craft for VIBE
      • I am amazed at our blessings with the variety and abundance of clothes we can wear
      • watching Snowball grab a piece of sewing fabric and think she has won a gold medal

June 27 ~ 3 gifts framed by a frame

butterfly cards for sale

      • as I looked through the window frame this morning early, I saw the pinkest sky
      • going through garage sale items we found a few pictures in frames to sell

June 28 ~ 3 gifts eaten

      • my morning apple – so crunchy and sweet
      • pistachios for a snack
      • a yummy dinner and family arrived

June 29 ~ a gift small, big and just right

      • we had little ones here this weekend; the youngest – 3 months
      • a big turnout for the garage sale

granddaughter-and-grandma-garage-sale

      • our day was just right – no rain, not too hot and the bugs were bearable (with a little spray)

June 30 ~ 3 gifts you gave today

      • patience
      • a listening ear
      • companionship

July 1 ~ 3 gifts loved

      • reading Tadeo Turtle to children in Minden for the Canada Day celebrations

Janis-at-Minden-Canada-Day

      • seeing all the families enjoying Canada Day

Canadian Flag on our front yard

Minden-Church

      • a letter from a little Tadeo reader and a picture

letter-to-Janis

July 2 ~ 3 gifts read

      • can’t help but see the word “READ” which is my maiden name – passing this delight on to my children and grandchildren. You are never too young to read

never-too-young-to-start-to-read

      • the privilege to read the Bible
      • my morning IPAD reading the Huffington Post

Once again I have added a place for you to put your links. It will remain open for a month. Let’s continue to build this JOY DARE community.

Multitudes on Mondays

 

GraceLaced Mondays

 

 

Beauty in His Grip Button
 

 



CAN I JOY DARE YOU? Weeks 20 and 21

Can I Joy Dare You? Weeks 20 and 21

Can-I-Dare-You-Butterfly Batik Watercolour by Janis Cox

Don’t forget to follow me by my RSS FeedTwitterFacebook; or Pinterest.

And oh how I would love to have you subscribe by email. Please see the right sidebar for more information.

As I continue to count the gifts I feel like I have been on a scavenger hunt seeking new things. A wonderful week searching and looking. Thanks so much to Ann Voskamp for leading this journey.

I have opened a LINKY for one month. If you count the gifts of God I would welcome you to link to this post. I would love to visit each one of your blogs.

Coming off my blogging Sabbatical – I feel refreshed and ready to begin the week.

May 13 – 3 gifts found in your Mother

Grandma

  • my Mother had perseverance. When we were growing up my Dad had a broken back (which he kept healthy by exercises); my sister became diabetic at 10 years of age; I suffered from asthma from age 3. Mom kept us all organized and healthy.
  • my Mother had a sweetness of spirit, a wonderful smile and she loved people and people loved her
  • my Mother was humble and was always doing something for others

May 14 ~ a gift picked up; put away and put back

  • picked up: I love picking up my Bible, Oswald Chambers and Jesus Calling every morning
  • put away: I a learning (slowly) to put away my stuff as I use it. Learning this habit.
  • put back: I put back all the spices I used for dinner. I love how spices can make a meal sing.

May 15 ~ 3 gifts about you

  • I am determined
  • I love to encourage others by prayers, offering Scriptures and listening to their troubles
  • I am disciplined. My allergies made me learn to focus on making good choices.

May 16 ~ 3 gifts found in the Word

  • Proverbs 19:21 – the Lord’s purpose prevails
  • 1 John 5:14 – if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us
  • Romans 12:12 – Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction and faithful in prayer

May 17 ~ a gifts in a box; in a bag; in a book

  • in a box: I found some bridge tallies (my Mom’s) in a box. I found a friend who likes bridge and donated them to her
  • in a bag: my Hubby does the grocery shopping and brings home all the groceries in reusable bags
  • in a book: I read a chapter or two a night; I love historical fiction; right now I am reading biblical historical fiction by Bunn and Oke, the Acts of Faith Series; I am in the second one.

Centurion's Wife

May 18 ~ 3 gifts unexpected

  • a dream I remembered. A black monster in the sky; I headed to the crawl space; I had no fear. Our crawl space is on bedrock. I have a firm foundation. Stick with Jesus – He is our Rock
  • I learned to write the Lord’s Prayer in my own words
  • all our family will be meeting together on Sunday (and it didn’t rain)

May 19 ~ 3 gifts from childhood

  • safety – I always felt safe
  • love – I always felt the love of my parents and my sister
  • my sister – a continuing gift to me

May 20 ~ a gifts sweet; sour; and salty

These all come from our family day together

  • gift sweet: fruit cocktail with raspberries, strawberries, blueberries and canteloupe
  • gift sour: my grandson had a sour expression as he hadn’t had enough sleep the night before (firecrackers); but he perked up after a little snooze in the car
  • salty: we had corn chips for dinner instead of potatoes or rice

May 21 ~ 3 gifts found in little people

  • exuberance – grandchildren who ran and played all day
  • laughter while playing Monopoly with my granddaughter
  • cuddles and snuggles with our 2 month old grandson

May 22 ~ 3 gifts that made you laugh

  • Snowball’s excitement when she sees me first thing in the morning – kisses, and her whole body is shaking with love

Snowball

  • my friend learning to laugh at herself when she makes mistakes (she is a perfectionist); made me laugh too
  • seeing the number of reading glasses my Hubby has lying around our house (all from the dollar store)

May 23 ~ 3 gifts found in community

  • reviewing the notes from our community association AGM and the members support of the directors’ initiatives
  • watching how our entire county is rallying around raising funds for flood relief in Minden
  • how our Pregnancy Care Centre has become, in 7 years, a vital presence in the lives of moms and dads

May 24 ~ a gift in a plate; a pot; and a package

  • in a plate: I love my new less expensive but great looking kitchen plates
  • in a pot: I love my oatmeal every morning for breakfast especially as my Hubby makes it
  • in a package: getting my raffle basket ready for a conference

raffle basket

May 25 ~ 3 gifts hard giving thanks for

  • a very tired body
  • disappointment in low sales at the conference
  • frustration in knowing whether what we are doing  in marketing is making sense

May 26 ~ a gift worn, white and whispered

  • a gift worn: thankful I took my warmer coat on this trip as it was chilly out
  • a gift white: we took our white boat out of the garage, getting it ready to launch
  • a gift whispered: I heard God’s whisper today as I rested in Him on the Sabbath

Please make sure that you only link if you are counting the gifts of God. I will take down other links. We are trying to connect with those who are writing about the gifts.

Thanks to the following blogs that I link to :

Multitudes on Mondays

GraceLaced Mondays

 

Beauty in His Grip Button



I’M HERE – WHERE ARE YOU?

I’m Here – Where are You?

by Patricia Day (reprinted with permission)

QUESTION

John 14:1-3 “Don’t be troubled. You trust God, now trust in me. There are many rooms in my Father’s home, and I am going to prepare a place for you. If this were not so, I would tell you plainly. When everything is ready, I will come and get you. And you know where I am going and how to get there”. (NLT)

We are a one car family and so when I need the use of our car, I have to get my body out of bed early enough to travel with my husband, into town and deposit him at his workplace. At the end of the day, I reverse that order and journey to bring him back home again so he can relax and enjoy the comforts of home. Hopefully, it welcomes him with a modicum of order after I have done necessary housekeeping through the day, thus making it a place for each of us to enjoy come evening.

I tend to be very punctual and so, when my husband is not at the appointed place at the agreed time, I begin to display my ‘antsy’ disposition.

“Ok, I’m here, where are you?” or “Come on, Mister, I’ve worked hard at home cleaning and preparing supper and I’m tired too, I need to get home” or “I’m here, come and find me then I can take you home”.

I agree – it is sadly not the best attitude and certainly not a godly one.

continue to read Patricia’s post at I am Here – Where are You?

Patricia Day

Patricia Day

Writing has always been a passion of Patricia. She can express myself better in writing, than verbally.  She enjoys creating short stories and devotionals. Her favourite past-times: family-time; gardening; reading; walking and listening to good music. Married.  Mother of two sons; step-Mom to a son & daughter and Nana to ten.

Look for her devotionals at Pepe Prays and her blog at Patters Matters.

Patricia has recently completed her first novel – Eleanor, A Stolen Childhood – which is in the process of publication.  Her second novel, Priscilla – Hidden in the Shadows is now being written.

SENSE OF WONDER IN PRAYER

Sense of Wonder in Prayer

by Judith Lawrence

“Prayer is the art of presence. Where there is no wonder there is little depth of presence. The sense of wonder is one of the key sources of prayer. Wonder at the adventure of being here is one of the special qualities of humans.…Sometimes in humans profound wonder can only be expressed in silence” (John O’Donahue Eternal Echoes Page 195)

Some years ago I wrote a poem titled “Guest of the World”. I have included it below as I think it sums up the sense of wonder that we have been given as humans and the prayer of thanksgiving for all that the Creator has given us in this world.

Guest of the World

As a guest of the world I want to see all its beauty; when I return to heaven I will tell of the white purity of snow, the delicate pastels of spring blossoms, the deep blue of the summer sky, the flaming reds and golds of autumn.

As a guest of the world I want to hear all its sounds; when I return to heaven I will tell about the sound of ocean waves crashing to the shore, the song of birds, the baby’s cry, the howl of wolves, the eerie night song of the spring peepers.

As a guest of the world I want to savour all its tastes; when I return to heaven I will tell of the sweetness of honey, the refreshing tang of an orange and the sourness of lemon. I will describe the burning heat of chilli peppers and the juicy delight of grapes from the vine.

As a guest of the world I want to touch all its textures; when I return to heaven I will tell of the roughness of a tree’s bark, the velvet softness of a cat’s fur, the prickliness of a rose’s thorns, the sting of a nettle.

As a guest of the world I want to smell all its scents; when I return to my heavenly home I will tell of the heady perfume of lilacs, the warning odour of a skunk, the smokiness of a wood fire, the moist earth after rain.

When I return to heaven I will tell of the wonders of the earth and the many blessings I was given as its guest. And I will thank the Creator for such an exciting and marvellous place, where I learnt so many new things. And like all weary travellers, however kind the hosts and enchanting the country, I will be glad to be home and give thanks for my safe return.

© Judith Lawrence

Judith Lawrence

Judith Lawrence lives in Muskoka, Ontario, a land of lakes, forests, and wildlife. She began to write seriously when she was in her fifties and has written three non-fiction spiritual books. Judith has also written a book of mystical poetry and one of short stories; she writes a weekly blog about contemplation and records a podcast meditationmonthly.