BlogsThoughts and insights from Jubilee Church Wirral
Blessed by the little things
By Andrew Greenhalgh, Life Group leader, Jubilee Church Wirral
As I sit down to write this blog, I am surrounded by little blessings.
I came into my office this morning to be greeted by a note from my son which would be hugely sweet if it was left for me by my 10-year-old, but was touching beyond measure considering it was left by my 19-year-old.
I have just eaten a mince pie which, no exaggeration, is possibly the nicest mince pie I have ever tasted.
(Confession: I have eaten a lot of mince pies.)
I am listening to fantastic Christmas music on my iPod in the office. This morning I have been accompanied by The Waitresses, Bruce Springsteen, Eurythmics, The Ronettes and many others. Right now, Run DMC are playing!
My wife has just messaged me to say how excited my daughter was at opening her lunch which I made her yesterday afternoon.
A very good friend of mine has messaged with an encouraging message from a guest at this weekend’s youth meeting.
Another good friend saved me a whole load of time by doing something yesterday afternoon.
These are just a smattering of the ways I feel blessed today.
Now if I wanted to, I could list a few things that I am struggling with at the moment. My life is not perfect.
But it’s so important to thank God for the basic stuff. The stuff we could not notice and forget about if we didn’t make an effort.
Being grateful and praising God for the little things as well as the big things isn’t just important, it actually HELPS us. We were made to worship. We don’t feel complete unless we do it.
In Psalm 34, David says this: “I will extol the Lord at all times; his praise will always be on my lips. I will glory in the Lord; let the afflicted hear and rejoice.
Glorify the Lord with me: Let us exalt his name together.Glorify the Lord with me; let us exalt his name together.”
That sounds like a direct invitation from David to me. I don’t know about you, but when David invites me to praise God with him I’m saying yes.
Maybe you’re reading this and thinking: “There’s nothing in my life to be grateful for. Everything’s rubbish and I’m not praising anyone thanks very much.”
I get that. I’ve felt like that plenty of times too. But I know from experience that saying thank you to God for the smallest of things (electricity, running water, a bed to sleep in) is a good way to start feeling a bit brighter.
So here’s a challenge.
Think of something that you can be grateful for today. More than one thing if you’re feeling adventurous.
Then thank God for it.
Andrew Greenhalgh with his wife Julie
In the month of remembrance, Chris on remembering what Jesus sacrificed for us and how we need to act on it.
Helen on the importance of Friends and what God has to say about them in the Bible.
Andrew on evangelism, how we are all evangelists whether we like it or not, and how to evangelise easily.
Dawne on the parable of the lost sheep and the lessons we can take from it as followers of Jesus and members of His flock.
Yvonne on loss and how God has helped her deal with the loss of her mum and the impending departure of her eldest son to his first job
Nicki on serving at Newday and the impact it has had on all three Frodsham children and many, many others
Simon on the frustrations of not being able to get to sleep properly, and the Bible verses that help him stand firm against sleeplessness.
Gerry on how easy it is to be drawn into gossip. “If you can’t say anything positive, don’t say anything at all” isn’t just good advice, it’s Biblical wisdom.
Sylvia on being an encourager: “God knows our troubles. When we open up to Him, He’ll use other people to encourage us through His word.”
Lynne on doing what God wants us to do even when we really don’t want to do it – and why it’s important
Chris on the power of our words and how having a relationship with Jesus can give us the power of the right word at the right time.
Helen on why Psalms have taken the place of Proverbs as her favourite book of the Bible
Andrew Greenhalgh on being much better at giving advice than at taking it – and what happens as a result.
Chantal Robertson on how God and the gospel of Christ has never changed over time – even though the way we package it has.
Nicki on how she was planning to work in the marketing and advertising industry until God led her in a different direction.
Dawne challenges us to look at life with the enthusiasm, joy and exuberance of her Macedonian dog Floki and find joy in the everyday.
Jen on how taking the Alpha Course because she had nothing better to do on a Tuesday afternoon led to a life-changing wheelchair for her daughter Daisy and many others.
Gerry on how her ideas of what love truly is have changed over the years, and how love can be so much more than a feeling.
Matt Wilson on how God is weaving a tapestry – and knows what that looks like. He can see the big picture. Our part is to trust him with the threads he has given us.
Denise Griffiths on resolutions and why she has resolved not to make the usual New Year’s resolutions such as giving up chocolate, eating healthier or doing more exercise!
Vernon on the transience of life, and how, through all suffering, God’s steadfast love has the capacity to satisfy us every morning.
Andrew Greenhalgh on how he ended up going to church on Christmas morning for the first time at the age of 11 – and what it has taught him.
Helen on how preparations for Christmas vary from family to family and country to country. And what happened to Helen’s Lindt advent chocolates?