What Does Autumn and Thankfulness Have In Common


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Fall is here.  On Friday Nadine, Tyler, and I decided to pull down the attic ladder and pull the dust incrusted plastic that encased our scare crows and begin the process of decorating our front entrance. Tyler did the dirty work of getting up in the attic (it’s nice to have your kids do the dirty work). The more we pulled our fall stuff down, the more fun it became to work together in putting symbols of our fall season.

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Our front door was highlighted with an autumn wreath replete with a small scare crow, autumn leaves and a basket of fake fruit.  For us in Arizona it is new phase of opening our doors to let the cool breezes in or sitting on our patio in the morning and drinking coffee by our pools, not going in the pools as the temperature in the pools have dipped to a cold 78 degrees.

It begins the season where we can start to meditate on the things that we are thankful for, culminating with a thanksgiving feast at the end of November.  Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we had the attitude of thankfulness that Paul describes in I Thessalonians 5:18, “Thank God in everything no matter what the circumstances may be, be thankful and give thanks, for this is the will of God for you who are in Christ Jesus.” (Amplified Bible)

In EVERYTHING!!!  The good things.  The bad things.  The times when we are depressed.  The times when others are rejoicing over our problems.  It’s easy to be thankful when things are going well, but when the circumstances of life take a turn for the worse, how do we (or might I apply it to myself) respond to the adversities of life.  This is a tough one to apply, but I am reminded of John the Baptist who was having many follow him.  Thousands were going out and being baptized by John, but when Jesus came along, even some of his disciples left him and began to follow Jesus.  John says in John 3:30, “He must increase and I must decrease.

I believe the secret of being thankful for all things is embedded in John the Baptist’s phrase, “He must increase and I must decrease.  Often when we are thankful it is because something positive has happened to us and we find it difficult to be thankful when something bad has happened to us.  If we were to have the attitude of having Jesus increase and us decreasing, the focus would be on Christ becoming more and more apart of me so that no matter what happens, He is gaining the glory, so that we can truly be thankful always.

This new season of the year, on my journey, I am going to seek to apply this principle in my life so that when Thanksgiving comes I will not just celebrate thankfulness for the weekend, but it can become a pattern every day for the rest of my life.  Thankfulness makes the journey so much more enriching.

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About James Gorton

I am happily married to Nadine, a person I've known for 20+ years. She and her late husband owned Airpark Auto Service where I took my car for years. Four years after my wife died we began dating and the rest is history. We have a blended family of 6 children between us and love visiting them across this country. We recently had our third grandchild between us. We love to hike, bike and ski. I am a psychologist and do relational life coaching for marriages and families primarily. I love what I do and never get tired of seeing marriages and families move to more healthy places in their lives. Five years ago my oldest daughter Deborah encouraged me to begin writing my thought into a blog I call my Jlog (Jim's log). I have become more and more passionate in connecting everyday experiences to spiritual truths. I hope that as you read my Jlog, you will gain insight into your personal life and experience true growth in your personal and relational life.
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