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Allison Althoff
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November 21, 2012

TCW Staff Is Thankful For . . .

We’ve been blessed by God’s sovereignty, Sudoku, and more. Can you relate to what keeps us sane this holiday season?

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The holidays are upon us, and it’s easy to get lost in the hustle and bustle of black Friday shopping, travel, and in-laws. Even when life gets crazy, it’s important to remember to give thanks for the blessings God has given us. Here are a few things TCW staff is thankful for this holiday season.

God’s Sovereignty

Recently, I’ve been disciplining my heart and mind to focus on God’s sovereignty. As I get caught up in (and stressed out by) the demands of life, I find myself becoming anxious and discouraged. When I shift my attention to God, I remember that his plans and power far exceed everything we feel is important. When I remember that the “grass withers and the flowers fade, but the word of our God stands forever” (Isaiah 40:8), I find joy in knowing this life is worthwhile when I live for what will last far longer than my earthly life will.
Amy Simpson, managing editor, Marriage Partnership, ParentConnect, and Gifted for Leadership

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Sudoku

I’m grateful for many big things! God—God’s presence—is the ultimate reason for my gratitude. But I’m also grateful for one particular small and incredibly nerdy thing: Sudoku. During some current stresses in my life, I’ve carved out moments here and there for a little brain exercise. Surprisingly, it’s actually done my soul some good. It’s been a chance to dust out brain cobwebs and love God through engaging the somewhat atrophied mathematical/strategic part of my mind. I’m thankful that we can love God and enjoy his world (he’s infused this world with mathematics after all!) in small, fun, and unexpected ways.
Kelli B. Trujillo, managing editor, Today’s Christian Woman downloads

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Family

I can’t wait to burst through the front door of my parent’s house in Minnesota to be greeted by my obnoxious puggles before jumping into the arms of my twin sister, little sister, mom, and dad—all at the same time. People often say our life is crazy enough to be a reality television show, and I agree. While it may be difficult to get a word in edgewise when conversation gets going, our vibrant love for one another supersedes any conflicts or challenges we encounter. I’m eternally grateful to be related to such exuberant individuals, and thank God every day for blessing me with life and love abundant (Jeremiah 31:12).
Allison J. Althoff, associate online editor, Today’s Christian Woman

Remembering (and Online Shopping)

The thing that keeps me spiritually sane during the holidays is remembering. Remembering what God has done in the past year; remembering the gifts he has given me; and remembering the opportunities I’ve had to grow spiritually. Sometimes I get stressed out trying to make everything perfect for family celebrations. And then I’m thankful that my husband helps me remember what’s really important: simply being together. (And I’m thankful for online shopping. I’m positive avoiding traffic and packed department stores is good for my spiritual life.)
Beatrice Schoenrock, marketing project manager, Today’s Christian Woman

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Christmas Decorations
People think I’m crazy for putting my Christmas decorations up at the beginning of November (two trees this year!), but coming home after a long day of work, meetings, and activities, and having a dark, warm house full with of shimmering, white lights seriously calms me. This time of year, when I walk in the door, I more often than not keep the house lights off, throw down my bags, and drop on the couch. I love spending time resting, praying, and thanking God for my busy, yet fulfilling life—full of work I love, a ministry I’m passionate about, and faith, friends, and family that make it all worth it.
Cory Whitehead, director of brand and digital marketing for Christianity Today

God’s Unconditional Love

I’m thankful that God’s love and grace don’t depend on our circumstances; we know his care for us is constant, even when things are going wrong. I’m also thankful that we have a holiday devoted just to giving thanks. I plan to take advantage of that and rest in his goodness over the next four days (and hopefully beyond that too)!
JoHannah Reardon, managing editor, ChristianBibleStudies.com

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Pets

God must have taken great joy when he created animals—in particular, my crazy dog, Ruby. She’s curious, thinks she’s a lap dog, and will lick you until you laugh. She also signals she has to do her business by bringing a toy to you and then running around in circles with it until you figure she either wants to play or potty—or possibly both. Hey, she’s multitalented. Every time I look at her, though, I experience a bit of God’s playfulness. And for that, I’m joy-filled and ever grateful.
Ginger Kolbaba, editor, Today’s Christian Woman

Friends

I’m thankful to God for the wonderful gift of good friends. He has given me loving, caring, giving, and welcoming friends. My friends treat me as family and make me feel I belong. My life would be much different without them, and for that I am so grateful.
Aryantu Otiti, visiting editor from Uganda, Today’s Christian Woman

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God’s Love, Protection, and Redeeming Grace

I’m thankful for God’s continual love and protection over my family. This February my sister, Erin and her husband, Jason, are, after nine years of procrastinating having a baby. The fact that I’ll soon be able to meet another new life moves me to do things like, burst into tears in the baby section at Target because I’m so overwhelmed with joy. I’m thankful that through the years God has poured his grace into my family, bringing healing and redemption, and allowing us to love one another increasingly. It’s only by his grace. Also, I cannot wait to get my hands on the pumpkin pie.
Ashley Moore, editorial coordinator, Today’s Christian Woman

What about you? What are you thankful for this year?

Related Tags: gratitude, holidays, joy, thankfulness, thanksgiving

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