Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Remember- 2008

Deut. 8:1 "The whole commandment that I command you today you shall be careful to do, that you may live and multiply, and go in and possess the land that the LORD swore to give to your fathers. And you shall remember the whole way that the LORD your God has led you these forty years in the wilderness, that he might humble you,testing you to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep his commandments or not. And he humbled you and let you hunger and fed you with manna, which you did not know, nor did your fathers know, that he might make you know that man does not live by bread alone, but man lives by every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD. Your clothing did not wear out on you and your foot did not swell these forty years. Know then in your heart that, as a man disciplines his son, the LORD your God disciplines you. So you shall keep the commandments of the LORD your God by walking in his ways and by fearing him. For the LORD your God is bringing you into a good land, a land of brooks of water, of fountains and springs, flowing out in the valleys and hills, a land of wheat and barley, of vines and fig trees and pomegranates, a land of olive trees and honey, a land in which you will eat bread without scarcity, in which you will lack nothing, a land whose stones are iron, and out of whose hills you can dig copper. And you shall eat and be full, and you shall bless the LORD your God for the good land he has given you.

"Take care lest you forget the LORD your God by not keeping his commandments and his rules and his statutes, which I command you today, lest, when you have eaten and are full and have built good houses and live in them, and when your herds and flocks multiply and your silver and gold is multiplied and all that you have is multiplied, then your heart be lifted up, and you forget the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery, who led you through the great and terrifying wilderness, with its fiery serpents and scorpions and thirsty ground where there was no water, who brought you water out of the flinty rock, who fed you in the wilderness with manna that your fathers did not know, that he might humble you and test you, to do you good in the end. Beware lest you say in your heart, 'My power and the might of my hand have gotten me this wealth.' You shall remember the LORD your God, for it is he who gives you power to get wealth, that he may confirm his covenant that he swore to your fathers, as it is this day. And if you forget the LORD your God and go after other gods and serve them and worship them, I solemnly warn you today that you shall surely perish. Like the nations that the LORD makes to perish before you, so shall you perish, because you would not obey the voice of the LORD your God.

I can't believe this is the last day of 2008.

For many this will be a year that will not soon be forgotten, for reasons like; portfolios crashing, IRA's depleted, home foreclosures, businesses failing and, in the Northwest, a deep, white Christmas.

Some of those reminders I will remember but there are some other unique ones for me personally.

March 22 will be a day that I will remember as a turning point for me and our family. This is not because of something I have done to change my outlook, but it is God who is calling the shots and His reminders can be very vivid. I truly think this is one of the best things that could have happened to our family, though Grant has to live with the reminder the most. God is faithful to teach us things when we are willing to listen. He may continue to teach even when we are not initially unwilling and I hope that He continues to teach me what He wants me to get until I get it.

A stone show in Italy in late Sept. and October is an event that Teresa and I frequent, but this year was certainly unique, even internationally. With elections going on here and people in Europe talking about them as if they were electing their own President, there was a different tone to the show. Much of the rest of the world understood early on the importance of our elections, maybe more than some Americans did. Then in the midst of Presidential talks came the global economic slowdown/meltdown or whatever you want to call it. There was not much on TV in Europe that we could understand except for CNN and all that was on their mind was elections and the economy, so that weighed heavy on my mind while away buying stone for PG.

With all the craziness of the economy there is always the possibility of businesses going under, and PG is not exempt from any of that. God is SOLELY in control of PG's success and He is the One who will direct exactly what we need to keep us going or not. I truly believe this, though there are times when things begin to look good for even a couple of days that I stop relying on Him as much and breathe easier, which is totally foolish.

My prayer for 2009 is that I would remember where God has taken us, how He has so faithfully provided, protected and encouraged us and that He would continue to show me the path that He wants me to take personally, with our family and corporately.

He has been so faithful to get us through all of this and has taught us much. He is Good and He will continue to be good. I want to revel in His majesty in 2009 and prepare for what He has ahead, whether that is in the "Promised Land" or here on earth I want to be found faithful to Him.

Have a blessed New Year and look only to Christ, the Author and Finisher of our faith.

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