I’m thankful for a warm house, with electricity and running water and two bathrooms; heat in the winter and air conditioning in the summer; nice but not new furniture, mattresses and good bedding; way too many clothes in walk-in closets; books and magazines and newspapers and Bibles of every translation.

I am thankful for vehicles, in good condition, even though they are not new.

I am thankful for a job I love working on computers, and for the privilege which I also love of writing devotionals, other stories, and articles for publication. I am thankful for a retirement from a job of 32 years where I made many friends and received so much more than I gave, although I did earn my paycheck.

I am thankful for freedom to worship from my heart. I am thankful for the Pilgrims, the pioneers, and the founders of our country who paved the way for us to live a life of freedom in the United States of America.

I hope you all have full tummies every day of the year. And I wish you joy and the experience of knowing that you won’t die if your stomach growls from being hungry enough to lose a few pounds this year.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving Day weekend with family and friends and had plenty to eat and plenty leftover to fill the frig and freezer. I hope you ate till you were too full.

I hope everyone enjoyed their favorite ballgame or computer game or phone game and visit with their families.

I hope you smiled when they brought out the camera to take family pictures.

And I hope you said grace at the table and gave thanks to God before you started eating the Thanksgiving turkey.

I am thankful for you, my readers, and I want for you what Paul wanted for his fellow Christians in 3rd John verse 2, “Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.”

Non-Disposable Phones

My mother gave me my Uncle Otis’ crank wall phone recently. It’s a wooden box just like the ones you see in the movies—hangs on the wall with a handle you turn, an earpiece, and a mouthpiece. I remember being fascinated with it when I saw it hanging on his wall in Albuquerque in 1958 when we stopped at his home on our way to California. It has been adapted to use as a dialtone phone. That phone is at least 60 years old.

I have my grandmother’s black dial desk phone too, with the clear plastic label in the center of the dial with her phone number neatly typed on it. She used it right up until she passed away in 1985. That phone is at least 50 years old.

I still have my own blue Slimline phone, (not the princess phone—how I wish I still had that one) which I keep in the bedroom. I don’t keep it hooked up, since it has a loud ringer which can’t be turned off. That phone is about 30 years old. (The princess phone would be over 40.)

I just love these old phones. I have a hard times parting with them. We are now a throw-away society. It costs as much to fix something as to buy a new one.

If I were God, I would have been sorely tempted to discard Adam and Eve after they sinned.  After all, they were the only human beings alive. God could have easily created a new couple to take their place, and start all over with His plan, but He couldn’t do it. He created them Himself out of the love in His heart, and, even when they failed, He had a plan to redeem them.

Ephesians 1:4 The Message Bible says, “Long before he laid down earth’s foundations, he had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of his love, to be made whole and holy by his love.

Before He create the world, God in love had you and me on His mind

Heaven Is Real

I learned about Heaven and angels and Jesus when I was a little girl in Sunday school. We sang songs about Heaven, so I have always known that Heaven is real.

“I’m going to Heaven, I’m going there when I die
I’m going to Heaven in the sweet, sweet bye and bye
So angels place my order For a mansion and a crown
and in that Book up yonder Just write my full name down.”

“Heaven, happy home above, Heaven, land of peace and love
Oh, it makes me feel like traveling on
Heaven, eternal, Heaven, supernal
I’m so glad that it’s real.”

It is like getting on an airplane bound for Ireland. I have never been to Ireland. I know it exists because I studied geography in school. I have heard of people from Ireland. In fact, my ancestors were probably from Ireland (and Scotland and England.) I’d love to go to Ireland some day and visit the countryside where my ancestors lived and listen to the people speak Gaelic, the Irish language or English with an Irish brogue. But I have never been to Ireland, so I must take it on faith that Ireland actually exists.

I have never been to Heaven, but I’ve been to Oklahoma. I was born in Oklahoma. I’ve lived in Oklahoma all my life. Some people think Oklahoma is cowboys and Indians, oil derricks, flat plains and the Dust Bowl. But Oklahoma around Vinita is hills and valleys, Grand Lake, the tail end of the Ozarks out of Missouri and Arkansas, lush hay fields and cattle ranches. Oklahoma has a wide range of environments.

Heaven is as real as Ireland and Oklahoma. One day, like Paul, I will say, “The time of my departure is at hand.” 2 Timothy 4:6, then I will step out of Oklahoma and into Heaven.

The door to my airplane will close, the airplane will taxi down the runway, lift off and fly away, and when the door opens, I will be in Heaven.

“Lavon, you are not in Oklahoma anymore,” the Lord will say as He welcomes me Home to the Country of Heaven.

Best Friend

Who’s your best friend? In high school, there was a gang of us that hung around together. About five of us, including my sister, went everywhere together. Sandy got her car first, and I got mine soon after, and we transported all our friends to ball games and “draggin’ Main.”

I remember the first time I ever met Sandy. I was in the sixth grade and she transferred to Vinita, Ok. School from Big Cabin school. I was friendly to this new girl in school and after that Sandy and I spent a lot of hours together. She lived in Ft Worth for many years and I didn’t see her very often but our roots go way back to the sixth grade in 1961. She recently moved back to this area and we saw each other for the first time in several years.

I have many best friends now—my husband, my daughter and son, and my mother and my sisters. I have several friends from the past I don’t see very often who I am close to also. As soon as we get together, it is just like we have never been apart.

 I know people think you can only have one best friend, but answer me this: how do you narrow it down to only one?

 “A man that hath friends must show himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.” Proverbs 18:24.

I looked this up in the Hebrew and the first word “friend” means companion (and even husband) and the second word “friend” is a different word that means “someone you love like a relative.” This means a friend that you love better than some of your kinfolks. I have some friends like that.

Jesus is the Friend that sticks closer than a brother. He said he would never leave me or forsake me, that he would go with me till the end of the world.

He is my Savior, my Lord, my Boss, my Master, my Mentor, My Councilor, my Psychiatrist, my Comforter, my Best Friend.

If Jesus was the only friend I ever had, He would sure be more than enough.