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Thursday, April 27, 2006

Thursday Thirteen

Thirteen Things About My Life Verses - Psalm 46:1-3, 10

1. God is my refuge - He is the place I can go to hide when life is hard

2. God is my strength - He fights for me, and He gives me strength to stand when I could never stand alone.

3. God is a very present help in trouble - He is not just a God who says He will be there. He is a God who IS there. I can feel His presence with me through the good times and the bad.

4. Since I have a God like this, I have no reason to fear no matter what happens - inevitably things will happen in life. He didn't promise us a problem free life, just that He'd be with us all the way. I don't have to fear because He is with me.

5. Even if the whole earth were destroyed, God would still be God.

6. Sometimes we need to stop and remember that God is God.

7. If we take the time to stop, we will know that He is God because we will be able to see the evidence of all He has done around us.

8. God will be exalted among the heathen. Though at times it seems that the world gets by with so much evil, we can trust in the fact that God is still in control. One day every knee will bow before Him.

9. God deserves our praise and adoration.

10. God isn't just interested in our doing. He's interested in our willingness to listen to Him.

11. If I take the time to listen to God, He will show me that He can handle anything.

12. If I race ahead of God, I will probably miss some important things that He wants me to learn.

13. It's not about me. It's about God. God deserves all the glory.

Links to other 13's. Leave your link and I'll post you here!!

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

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Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Wednesday's Word

Well, after a few weeks of craziness, I'm getting back to my regularly scheduled program of Wednesday's word. This week's word is one that has been on my heart a lot lately. The word is JOY.

Actual meaning: Intense and especially ecstatic or exultant happiness.

Meaning to me: The ability to have a peaceful, content feeling deep inside regardless of life's circumstances.

Happiness is something that we all seek. It's human nature to want things to go well. But happiness is fleeting. One day you can be flying high and the next day a storm can send you crashing to the ground.
But joy is different. Joy is something you can have in any circumstance. See, joy comes from the Lord. In fact, the joy of the Lord is our strength. (Nehemiah 8:10)
The joy that we receive deep inside when we are saved is what keeps us strong in the trials of life. And no one can take that from us. But we must recognize the strength that we have. If we don't depend on the Lord in those times of trial, we get defeated. True joy can only come from the Lord.
So trust on Him. Praise Him even in the storms of life. (Check out this post at Reflecting Him) A life of depence on God is a life of true joy!!

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Monday, April 24, 2006

There's Something So Much Better

Last night the young people at our church congregated at our usual hangout after the night service. Our usual hangout...Pizza Hut.
Now it isn't New York Pizza or anything, but for North Carolina it's the best pizza. The crust just melts in your mouth. While we were eating we got in a discussion about the best frozen pizzas. (Don't ask, I don't know why!)
Anyway, there were votes all around. My cousin Christy and I stand by Freschetta while my friend Melissa is strongly in favor of Red Baron. But though we differed on favorites, we all agreed on the nastiest tasting frozen pizza. Tony's won that prize hands down. (If you like Tony's pizzas sorry. We just don't!)
My cousin Christy was talking about her grandparents. See, her grandpa loves Tony's pizzas. (Though Christy doesn't understand why.) When her grandma was alive, her grandpa would cook Tony's pizzas all the time. Her grandma had never really eaten any other pizza. So her opinion was limited to Tony's.
A few years back Christy and her parents took some pizza up to Christy's grandma's house. Her grandma loved the good pizza they brought, and she was never really satisfied with the Tony's pizza after that.
While we were talking about it, I got to thinking. (I know weird things set my mind off!) Anyway, I thought about how lots of Christians are like Christy's grandma. They don't realize there is something better out there. Sure they sit in the church pew. They throw a few dollars in the plate. They may even read a verse or two here and there at devotion time. But they don't realize there is something more to be had.
Jesus didn't come to save us just so we could sit in church and fall asleep every Sunday. He came to bring us "joy unspeakable and full of glory." (I Peter 1:8) He came to give us life "more abundantly." (John 10:10)
I don't know about you, but I don't see that kind of joy very often. I don't see people taking advantage of that abundant life Jesus gives. Why not? It's right there for the taking. Yet we are content to take the norm. We are satisfied with the everyday.
I for one, am not satisfied. I've seen God work in a major way. I've seen Him work miracles in lives. I've been in services where people just can't sit still because they are so full of joy. It sure beats falling asleep on a pew. Since I've had a taste of what else is out there, I'm not content with the old stuff anymore.
How about you? Have you grown complacent. Are you just going through the motions of Christianity? If you are, there is so much more out there. There's life to be lived. Don't just sit there. Go out and live it!!

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Friday, April 21, 2006

Give Me More

First off, let me say I don't know what in the world is wrong with my blog. Its only showing like one post and cutting of the comments thing. I'll try to check into this over the weekend to get it fixed! Apparently GiBee's site is blessed b/c it's normal from there. Weird!
Anyway, now for today's thought. It was actually inspired by my 8 1/2 month old nephew. (He's really smart for his age!!) Actually, it was inspired by his eating habits. See, if there is food left in the plate, and he sees it, he thinks he is supposed to eat it, whether he is full or not. My sister has to remove the plate once he's had his fair share of food, or he'll eat and eat and eat. It's funny, but it made me think.
How many of us do the same thing? I mean God blesses us and blesses us, but we are never satisfied. We get other blessings in our sites, and we want more and more. We never stop to thank God for all that He's already done.
Philippians 4:11 talks about this, "Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content."
Now, I'm sure that Paul prayed for things. He talked with God about everything, but he had also learned to be content with what God had given him. He didn't expect God to give him a million blessings every minute. He was thankful for the things God had already given him. Because of this, I think God blessed Paul's life even more. God knew that Paul didn't take blessings for granted.
How about you? Do you thank God for what He's done for you? I've seen a great little "meme" going around about "simple pleasures." I think it's good because it's the little blessings in life that we so often forget to thank God for. So take some time today and thank Him. Don't go to Him saying, "Give me more." Rather say, "Thanks for all You've done!" I guarantee it will change your perspective!

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Thursday, April 20, 2006

Thursday Thirteen

Thirteen Verses About Rejoicing!! (I've been feeling kinda yuck the last few days, so I need a reminder to rejoice. Figured I could share with all of you!!)

1. Psalm 9:2,14 "2. I will be glad and rejoice in thee: I will sing praise to thy name, O thou most High...14. That I may shew forth all thy praise in the gates of the daughter of Zion: I will rejoice in thy salvation. " (We should sing and rejoice in His presence because of all He's done for us!)

2. Psalm 97:12, "Rejoice in the LORD, ye righteous; and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness." (We should rejoice because God is Holy. He is perfect.)

3. Psalm 119:162, "I rejoice at thy word, as one that findeth great spoil." (We have the Word of God. It's a treasure that we should rejoice over!)

4. Joel 2:21, "Fear not, O land; be glad and rejoice: for the LORD will do great things." (We serve a God who will do great things. That's a reason to rejoice!)

5. Habakkuk 3:18, "Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation." (We have reason to rejoice because we are saved!)

6. Zechariah 2:10, "Sing and rejoice, O daughter of Zion: for, lo, I come, and I will dwell in the midst of thee, saith the LORD." (God is with us!!)

7. Luke 6:23, "Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets." (We should rejoice even when it seems the world is against us!)

8. John 16:22, "And ye now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man taketh from you." (Even when this life has sorrow, we have a joy deep inside that no one can take away because we have Jesus!)

9. Romans 5:2, "By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God." (We have reason to rejoice because we have access to God's grace through Jesus Christ. We have hope because of Him!)

10. I Corinthians 13:6, "Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;" (We should rejoice in the truth of God not in the sins of this world. God's truth is eternal.)

11. Philippians 4:4, "Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice." (We should rejoice at all times in all things!)

12. I Thessalonians 5:16, "Rejoice evermore." (Again, there's no excuse not rejoice for what God has done for us!)

13. Revelation 19:7, "Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready." (We are the bride of Christ and one day He will return for us. That is reason to rejoice!!)

I feel better now that I've dwelt on rejoicing for a minute! Hope it helps you too!

Links to other 13's. Leave your link and I'll post you here!!
Better Safe Than Sorry

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

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Tuesday, April 18, 2006

He's All I Need

Okay, GiBee is responsible for today's post because my thoughts sprang from her Tuesday Toss up. You'll have to go over there and check it.

Her thoughts made me think of a song that my dad used to sing when I was little. The song is called, "He's All I Need" Check out these words:

He's all I need, when I just need someone to talk to.
He's always there to hear my prayer each time I call Him.
On this friend I can rely to be my strength as days go by,
He's the Lord of all, and He's all I need.

He comforts me when I'm weary, eases every pain.
He fills my deepest longing time and time again.
He's my soul's inspiration, my heart's consolation
He's my everything, He's all I need.

Back when I was young, I didn't understand the song as much as I do now. Sure, I thought it was pretty, but now I'm glad that the words stuck with me. Jesus is ALL that I need.

Check out Philippians 4:19, "But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus."

Did you catch that? God will supply all our needs according to His riches. I have no need to worry. Why? Because my God owns it all. He has no limit to His supply. Not only can He supply our physical needs, but He cares about our spiritual needs.

Check out Galatians 4:4-7, "4 But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, 5 To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. 6 And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. 7 Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ."

See, we were slaves to our sin. Our souls were in bondage, but God provided our way out. He gave us freedom through Christ. Now we are no longer slaves to sin. We are children of God. Isn't that awesome?

So no matter what you're going through, God has the answer. He'll give you the strength to make it through any trial. He'll provide your every need. All you have to do is ask Him. He will truly be your all in all!

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Monday, April 17, 2006

One Day

Okay, I've got to share some of my joy. Yesterday was like the most awesome Easter service I've ever been in. See, my dad got to come back to church for the first time since surgery yesterday. Not only did he come back and sit in the pew. He came back and led the singing. Plus, he sang with my brother, my sister and I.
It was awesome. God was on that place. Why? Because my whole church was in unity. Every single person there was feeling the same feeling of thanksgiving. It's a feeling I can't describe.
Anyway, my dad had asked my brother, my sister and myself to learn a new song called "One Day I Will" by Hope's Call. It's an awesome song.
It talks about how Jesus came to this earth and walked along with man. He walked the dusty streets of Jerusalem when He should have been walking streets of pure gold. He wore a crown of thorns when He deserved a crown of jewels.
But the chorus is the best part of all. Check this out:

But Jesus, one day, I will worship at your throne,
I will fall down on my knees and worship you alone,
One day, I will cast my crowns at your precious holy feet.
Praising you for all you've done for me.
One day.

See, that's the reason Jesus came to earth. He didn't have to come, but He did because He loved us. And one day we will all bow before Him to thank Him and praise Him for all He's done for us. That's a day I can hardly wait for! What about you?

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Friday, April 14, 2006

Topsy Turvy Life

Short post today! I'm headed off to Carowinds to spend the day on roller coasters! I love roller coasters as you may have guessed from the name of my blog. They are just so thrilling. The faster and twistier and higher the better. However, the twists and curves of life aren't so, so fun as a roller coaster. They can be hard, but God has promised us He'll always be there. He's promised us new mercies every morning. That means He'll give us the strength to get through each new day. We shouldn't worry about tomorrow. Nobody knows what tomorrow will bring, but if we trust in Jesus, we will have the strength for today. So if your life is headed into a corkscrew spin, remember that He is offering you mercy for today. All you have to do is reach out and take it!!
So here's a verse to take with you today:
Lamentations 3:22-23, "22 It is of the LORD's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. 23 They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness."

Have a good one, and I'll think of ya when I'm spinning through the twists of Top Gun!!

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Thursday, April 13, 2006

Thursday Thirteen

Sorry I haven't posted for the last week. I've been keeping my niece and nephew. Adorable, but a handful. My niece is at that wonderful stage where two seconds for me on the computer means two seconds for her to find a pen and draw all over herself or her brother!! I love them both more than I can say, but I'm glad to be back blogging!!

Thirteen Things I've Studied on This Week (Either in personal study or in church!)

1. God ALWAYS provides for His own. My church had a benefit for my dad last Saturday. The turnout was beyond my imagination. I knew people loved my dad but really this was a true God thing.

2. God hears our prayers. I know I've been saying this a lot over the last few weeks, but God's presence has just been so obvious the last few weeks!!

3. God is our shepherd. He'll go after us, even when we go astray.

4. God will reward our loyalty. Both our loyalty to Him and to others

5. God's mercies are new every morning, but we must take them. Just saying the mercies are there does us no good. We have to accept them in order for them to help us!

6. God cares about the little things in life (Thanks, Gibee!)

7. God sends just the right person along in your time of need.

8. God's ways are higher than our ways.

9. God knows the deepest thoughts of our hearts.

10. God's will never fails.

11. God alone knows when we will take our last step.

12. God is a personal God, He KNOWS my name. He knows the very number of hairs on my head!

13. God is the reason I'm alive today!!

I know there's a lot of random thoughts in there, but God has just shown me so much this week. It's hard to put it all into words!

Links to other 13's. Leave your link and I'll post you here!!
Undercover Angel

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

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Thursday, April 06, 2006

Thursday Thirteen

Thirteen Things I Need to Work on in My Daily Christian Walk

1. I need a stronger prayer life - I Thessalonians 5:17 says, "Pray without ceasing."

2. I need to care more for the burdens of those around me - Galatians 6:2, "Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ."

3. I need to spend more time in God's Word everyday - II Timothy 2:15, "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth."

4. I need to be more open about my faith to everyone I meet - Romans 1:16, "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek."

5. I need to be more faithful to my church. I go regularly, but I need to be more faithful to work in my church, more faithful to give to my church, more faithful to pray for my church.

6. I need to show more love to those around me - I John 4:7-8, "7 Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. 8 He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love."

7. I need to be more responsive to God's will, we are to follow Christ, and He prayed in Luke 22:42, "Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done."

8. I need to be more peaceful - Matthew 5:9, "Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God."

9. I need to be more joyful - Philippians 4:4, "Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice."

10. I need to be more patient - Hebrews 10:36, "For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise."

11. I need more faith - James 1:6, "But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed."

12. I need more wisdom - Proverbs 2:10-12, " 10 When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul; 11 Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee: 12 To deliver thee from the way of the evil man, from the man that speaketh froward things;"

13. I need more concern for souls - Proverbs 11:30, "The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise. "

Links to other Thursday 13's: (Leave your and I'll add it here!)
Cat Lady
Mom Nancy

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

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Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Wednesday's Word

Today's word was inspired by my niece. The word is perseverance.

Actual definition - persistent determination

Meaning to me - The ability to get up and keep on trying no matter how many times you fall

Like I said, this word was inspired by my niece, Raegan. I went with her last night to the Little Gym. (If you've never been you should go and watch the kids. Unless of course you don't know any young children who you could tag along with. If you just randomly walked into Little Gym and started watching the kids, you'd probably look like a stalker.)
Anyway, my niece has found a new favorite thing, the uneven bars. Well, just the lower bar really b/c that's the only one she could reach, but she begged me to put her on the top one, but I didn't think she was quite ready for it yet. So there she was leaning out to the bar and grabbing on. She fell flat on her face several times, but finally she learned the right way to grip. Of course, she's only two so she'd lose her grip after a minute and fall from the bar. (Don't worry, The Little Gym is well padded)
I watched this kid fall onto her butt. She slipped from the bar and landed in a split, and I can count all the times she landed flat on her face, but no matter how painful the fall looked, she got right back up and grabbed the bar again.
By the end of the night she could swing her feet forward and hold them in a sitting position for several seconds. The grin on her face when we clapped and clapped for her showed us that all the falls were worth it to win our praise.
It would have been easy for her to cry and give up after that first fall. Or the second, or the hundredth, but she didn't. She kept persevering, and she was rewarded by achieving her goal.
We should be the same way in life. There are going to be times we fall. We have a choice at every fall. We can stay and wallow in the dirt, or we can get up and pray for God's strength to help us go on.
Check out this verse from Ephesians 6:18, "Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;"
Even when we fall, we can pray and ask for God's Spirit to help us. He wants us to persevere in our prayers. He doesn't want us to give up on ourselves or on others who may have fallen. We are to pray, no matter how hopeless it seems.
So if something seems so far out of reach today, keep running. Keep praying. Keep working towards that goal. The rewards are well worth it.

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Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Sometimes Rules Are For Our Own Good

My dad got to come home from the hospital yesterday. (Yay!) This is something I'm very thankful for. Of course he got the whole lecture on what to do and what not to do.
One of the things he is not to do is lift something over five pounds. Doesn't seem so tough does it? Tell that to a man whose two year old granddaughter comes up to him wanting to be picked up every 5 seconds. But as hard as it may seem, it's for his own good. If he gave into my niece and picked her up, he'd likely hurt himself and may end up having to face more surgery later on. There is good reason for the doctor's rules.
God has given us some rules as well. Some of them are pretty cut and dry, like do not kill, do not steal. We see the reasoning for them. Some of the others can be harder, like put no other gods before me. In word its so easy, but I'm guilty of breaking this rule more than once. I've put friends and family before God. I've put TV before God. I don't intend to, but somehow I wake up and realize that I've not spent the time that God deserves with Him. I let life get before God. It shouldn't be that way. God should rule my life. My life is not my god.
God gave us this command for our own good. See, He has a perfect will for our lives, and when we keep Him first, things go according to His perfect will. But when we decide that one thing or another is more important than God, our lives are thrown off kilter.
So try to keep your focus on Him today. He wants what is best for your life.

Lilypie 2nd Birthday Ticker

Monday, April 03, 2006

Put It Back Together

My sister and I decided to get my mom out of the hospital yesterday and take her to lunch. We had a nice enjoyable meal at Elizabeth's, an Italian restraunt not far from the hospital. We of course had my niece and nephew with us.
My nephew spent most of the meal asleep in his carrier (being that he's to young to enjoy Italian food.) My niece, however, was wide awake. (Though maybe she really should have been napping)
Truly, both kids did amazingly well considering they were at the hospital for almost the entire weekend. Anyway, by the end of the meal, my niece's sleepiness had gotten the best of her, and she was getting a bit whiny. And her tiredness really began to show when her piece of bread broke into two pieces, and she began crying and asking my sister to "Put back together."
You know as well as I do that you can't put a broken piece of bread back together. So my niece was a bit upset, but she got over it when we gave her a bite of pizza. Thank God for pizza.
Anyway, it really got me thinking. There are some things in life that we simply can't, "Put back together." We can't change a broken life and make it whole again. But unlike my niece who had no hope of having her piece of bread being put back together again, we have something to cling to. See, Jesus can put a life back together again. He's a miracle worker. He's the one who made the lame to walk and the blind to see. He's the one who raised Lazarus from the dead.
So, we have hope. Though our lives may seem broken beyond repair, Jesus can fix them. Look at these verses in Jeremiah 18:
2 Arise, and go down to the potter's house, and there I will cause thee to hear my words. 3 Then I went down to the potter's house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels. 4 And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it.
See, no matter how marred our lives may be, Jesus can make us over again. We are like clay in the potter's hands. So no matter how broken you are, go to Jesus, He can put you back together.

Lilypie 2nd Birthday Ticker

Saturday, April 01, 2006

God Is So Good

Well, I wanted to post yesterday, but I didn't leave the hospital until after 10 last night, and we live about an hour away from there. By the time we all got home, we were pretty beat. But God answered prayer (not to say that our prayers wouldn't have been answered if things had turned out differently, but I'm glad God chose to answer us in this way.)
Anyway, dad came out of surgery just fine. The surgery only lasted 2 1/2 hours (they said it would take at least three), but God must have put a special touch on the surgeon's hands. Also, we got news just minutes after we heard about my dad that a lady that goes to my church that had to have a cancerous tumor taken from her lung yesterday came through her surgery with flying colors, and the doctor now feels that he got all her cancer, and she won't have to face chemo or radiation.
Isn't God so awesome? Yesterday in that hospital, I know that God was there. I don't know how people go through life without Him or don't see Him for who He is. God is real, and He is good. He walked the halls of that surgical unit yesterday, and He blessed. So this is the tune I'm singing today:

God is so good,
God is so good,
God is so good,
He's so good to me.

He answers prayer,
He answers prayer,
He answers prayer,
He's so good to me.

I love Him so,
I love Him so,
I love Him so,
He's so good to me!

Thank all of you so much for lifting up my dad in prayer. It meant more to him than you'll ever know. I hope your day will be as blessed as mine!