Monday, October 31, 2011

Dancing Angels

The breeze through the open kitchen window made the angels dance and sing. And each random melody reminded me of the angels in my life - both past and present.

The angel windchimes are a fairly recent addition to my kitchen. When my grandparents' home was torn down in May, my Dad rescued them from their perch between the dining room and living room. I had given the windchimes to my Grandma for a long-ago birthday. I brought them home and hung them in my kitchen window. And while I certainly thought about Grandma as I worked in the kitchen, I soon became used to their presence. So often, we no longer truly see the everyday, familiar things around us.

But last month, with the windows flung open to celebrate fall after a summer of record-breaking, 100-degree-plus days, the wind chimes began to dance. I heard them all throughout the house. Even from my downstairs office, I could hear the music of the angels.

And I remembered.

I remembered all the people who have left this life, but who left a legacy of love for me and my family.

And I was thankful.

But as I listened to the angels sing, I was also reminded of the "angels" still in my life.

I love Josh Groban's song, Thankful.

It says, in part:

Some days we forget
To look around us
Some days we can't see
The joy that surrounds us
So caught up inside ourselves
We take when we should give.

So for tonight we pray for
What we know can be.
And on this day we hope for
What we still can't see.
It's up to us to be the change
And even though we all can still do more
There's so much to be thankful for.

This past month, there were plenty of people who were "the change" for me. They danced into my life and made a difference.

  • My Mom made a crib dust ruffle for our granddaughter-to-be. My sewing skills aren't the best, and it was a blessing for her to do that for Jill and the baby.

  • Mary, one of my Bible study friends, brought me an angel that my late mother-in-law made as a gift for her years ago. She asked that I give the angel to my daughter, knowing that the handmade treasure would mean more to our family. (Marie, my mother-in-law, passed away 15 years ago in October.)

  • Vi, one of my Facebook friends, offered to sell me a toddler-sized K-State cheerleading outfit before putting it in her garage sale pile. Before I know it, our little granddaughter, who is due in January, will be cheering for our family's alma mater in a little outfit that has never even been worn.
Those three ladies were among many people who blessed me with love, care and special kindness throughout the month.

Read the words of the song once again:

Some days we forget
To look around us
Some days we can't see
The joy that surrounds us
So caught up inside ourselves
We take when we should give.

During this month of Thanksgiving, look around you. Stand awestruck at God's creation in every sunrise and sunset and all the moments in between. Truly see the little kindnesses that come your way through family, friends and even strangers.

And then give it back. Give it back to the person who made a difference for you. Or pass it further along with a random act of kindness to someone else.

Like the song says, "It's up to us to be the change." It's what God calls us to do in Colossians 3: 12-17:
Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.

It's Thanksgiving Month. So there has to be a food part to this Food for Thought!

Herbed Turkey Breast

Maybe you don't need a full-sized turkey for your Thanksgiving celebration. A turkey breast may be just right for a small family gathering. Actually, this Crockpot meal is good anytime of the year. Click here for the recipe.

Stovetop Ham Casserole

Stovetop Ham Casserole is the perfect way to use ham leftover from your holiday table. Click here for the recipe.

Happy Thanksgiving and God Bless You!

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