Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Giving Thanks!


By Debby Giusti
  
Today, I give thanks for all of you, the writers and readers who frequent Seekerville. Over the years, you’ve shared your joys and your sorrows with us. You’ve commented on our blog posts, read our books, left reviews, told your friends about our stories and have supported us with your encouragement and, most of all, your friendship.

Thank you, dear Villagers, for being a part—the most important part—of this blog. You are the reason we write and the reason we blog. I hope you know how special you are to us. Together, we have grown into a community of sisters and brothers united across the miles by our love for story.

During this Thanksgiving season, my heart is filled with gratitude for God’s many blessings. Everything I am or have is because of His mercy and love. He gives me life and sustains me as I try to follow Him. Luke 17:11-19 comes to mind. Jesus had healed ten lepers but only one—a Samaritan—returned to give him thanks. At this special time of the year, let’s offer thanks to the Lord for all He has given us. I’ve asked the charter Seekers and our newer blog sisters to write about that for which they are most grateful in a short Thanksgiving reflection.



I'm so thankful for each of you today! You bless my life every day as I visit the blog or meet up with you on social media. I pray that each of you has a blessed day with family and friends, full of love and gratitude. I hope we'll all reach out to those who may be lonely or hurting today. I pray God will be with each one to give peace and comfort. Happy Thanksgiving my friends!

 

This year, I'm giving thanks for the way God has led our church, bringing us an interim pastor after our previous pastor of 20 years left our church. I'm thankful for my ladies' Bible study, and the way they have encouraged me. I am so thankful that my husband continues to be cancer free and to tolerate his daily chemo well. I'm very thankful for all the traveling mercies I've experienced this year. And I'm thankful for Seekerville and my Seeker sisters who encourage, pray, laugh, and support one another with such grace.

Annie, AKA Just Commonly

I'm extremely thankful for this bookish community, for the many great friendships introduced that I know will last long, if not for a lifetime.  I've been loved, supported and even humbled this year, sharing of God's love and grace. So thank you to every one of you.  
  


For many of us, giving thanks for life’s many blessings isn’t a once-a-year event, it’s a daily way of life. I’m acutely aware that I am one of the most privileged people on planet earth—given clean water, a comfortable home, good food on the table, close family and friends, freedom to worship God, and countless other blessings I’ve done nothing to deserve. Most of all, though, I’m thankful that we are loved so much that God sent His one and only Son to bridge the gaping hole between us and our Heavenly Father. He, by his willing sacrifice, freely washed away the deep-set stains of our disobedience and welcomes us into an eternal relationship with Him. My prayer this season is that we would all take time to give thanks for—and accept—that unfathomable gift.


Giving thanks. Where do I start? How do I end? I look at all areas of my life and realize how blessed I am. I am blessed with health, financial stability, a home, healthy, beautiful, and perfect grandchildren, a Godly husband, a close knit family, dedicated church family, good friends to laugh (and cry) with, and good old country living in my little corner of the world. Should I dare to taint my glowing praise with a hint of juggling bills, health struggles, disagreements, those minor things only serve to shine a brighter light on how good God has been to me and mine. There’s no beginning and no end to His goodness, and all my thanks goes to Him. 


Oh, goodness, if I listed everything I’m grateful for, this would be longer than one of my old Seeker blogs! So instead, I’ll just compartmentalize in Reader’s Digest-style. Spiritually, I’m eternally grateful for God’s love and salvation. Emotionally I am forever grateful for children, grandchildren, friends, and Keith, the love of my life. Physically, I’m beyond grateful that I can see, hear (albeit marginally), walk, and write. And gastronomically, I’m utterly grateful for turkey, dressing, pumpkin pie, and Lindt’s Salted Dark Chocolate. THANK YOU, GOD, FOR YOUR MANY WONDERFUL BLESSINGS!



With our two daughters and their families living so far away—one on the other side of the country and the other overseas—the holiday season makes me especially grateful for the wonders of the internet. Thanks to Facebook, WhatsApp, iMessage, and other forms of instant communication, we can keep in touch and maintain those important family ties.


I love that we take a day to reflect on that which we are thankful for. In today’s busy world, we often forget to pause and give gratitude.

I am thankful for so many things. My family, friends, God’s provision and countless blessings, no matter how big or small. I’m thankful to be a part of Seekerville, not only to share my love of writing, but the opportunity to get to know both readers and writers alike. To share in their goals, triumphs and disappointments. To offer encouragement. God knows we need each other and Seekerville is safe place where we can gather and share our love of books. May you all be blessed beyond belief this holiday season.


I’m so very thankful that I have the privilege of talking to God, and amazingly, that He wants to hear from me! If you’ve ever noticed someone you’re talking with seem to stop listening, letting his or her gaze roam the room, maybe even settle on the televised game or nearby phone, then you realize how precious it is that the God of the Universe listens to every word. If only I could listen better to what He wants to say to me! The huge blessing is that even when I fail, God still wants a relationship. I think I’ll make LISTEN my One Word for 2019 and work on keeping my eyes and ears on Him.


Being a writer is a solitary business. Usually those involved are solitary people so it’s okay. But once in a while I get a letter, usually through my website email address thanking me for some book, the laugher, the adventure, and I am so thankful for that. To take the time to find an email address, write a note, is so thoughtful. And I fail to do things like that for others far too often. I am thankful for so many things about being an author but today I want to thank those who write authors notes.

I am encouraged and uplifted by notes from readers. And since many of them hang around Seekerville…thank you Seekervillagers, have a wonderful thanksgiving and God bless you.




I am thankful for so many things this year - my dad's improved health (after a scary cancer diagnosis), family, Jesus, story, BOOKS, Seekerville. I could go on and on - even in the midst of great grief this past year, there has been Joy and Peace as only Jesus can give. Yet, I want to mention specifically today how thankful I am for my friends, for the 'ride or die' (I really don't know what that means but everybody uses it so it must be cool or something lol) ladies that God has placed in my life. From the two friends I've known since 2nd grade to the bookish sisters I've met over the past three years - new and (ahem) old friends alike - I'm so incredibly grateful for their love and grace and laughter and wisdom. We cry together. We pray together. We LAUGH together. We swoon together. We praise Jesus together. We READ together. Love them so much. They are a true gift.


We are so blessed. There is so much to be grateful for in this country, with our health and our families but the thing I am most thankful for... the thing that shores me up and that holds me down when I'm about to say or do something stupid... is my faith. My faith in God. My faith in his son, Jesus Christ. My belief that the Holy Spirit guides us and loves us and challenges us... and that Christ's mother Mary was put in a position to set the very best example for us all. The example of sacrificial love. Of what it means to be a mother. Of that walk, to Calvary, and that cross. I am so blessed by that gift of faith because everything else, every other gift, stems from that. And that makes Thanksgiving perfectly beautiful.


I could fill an entire book with the things I'm thankful for, but I'll be brief: my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ; my dear husband; my family; every word I write; my readers; my church family; God's call on my life; the beauty of His world... I could go on and on. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Audra Harders

How do I begin to list the people and things I'm thankful for? When the noise of life is deafening, it's the quiet moments and low voices of friends and family that encourage me to focus and press on. I'm more than thankful for my loud, boisterous, unconventional family who make me run the gambit of my emotions, yet every night, there are hugs and "I love yous" scattered throughout the house. My Seeker sisters who laugh, love and pray for me. The people God brings into my life for special purposes I won't understand until the day I see Jesus face to face. Oh, and wait! I can't forget Dobby and Hank, our faithful dog kids whose sloppy kisses let me know everything is all right. God bless you all!



I am so very thankful for the grace that has allowed me the joy of being in the circle of a large, loving family, extended family and sweet (and spicy!) friends.



Thank you, Seekers, for those lovely words of gratitude!

Villagers, add your own words of thanks in a comment to be entered in a drawing for the fourth and final book in my Amish Protectors series, AMISH CHRISTMAS SECRETS.

May the Lord bless you and your families with peace and joy and health throughout this beautiful season of gratefulness. I thank God for each of you and the many ways you bring joy to my life.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wishing you abundant blessings,
Debby Giusti

AMISH CHRISTMAS SECRETS
By Debby Giusti

Safe Haven for the Holidays
The thrilling Amish Protectors conclusion
Leaving the nursing home where she works, Rosie Glick’s accosted by a man demanding incriminating evidence her murdered boyfriend stole—until Ezra Stoltz scares him off. Now with a killer dead set on silencing the Amish single mother, Ezra must hide Rosie and her baby to keep them safe. But can he expose a sinister conspiracy in time
to save the woman he secretly loves?

Order HERE!

Watch for AMISH SAFE HOUSE, the second book in the Love Inspired Suspense Amish Witness Protection continuity series.


AMISH SAFE HOUSE
Hiding in Plain Sight

The second thrilling Amish Witness Protection novel

After Julia Bradford’s son witnesses a gang shooting, hiding in witness protection on Abraham King’s Amish farm is the only hope the Englischer and her children have. Even as danger closes in, Julia is drawn to the community’s peaceful ways—and the ex-cop turned Amish protector. But when their location is discovered, can Abraham protect her family…and possibly have a future by her side?

Pre-order HERE!




61 comments:

  1. I believe the greatest philosophical question is:

    "Why is there something rather than nothing?"

    Nothing requires nothing. It's easy. No creator, no designer, no effort, no laws, no rationale, no knowledge, no awareness, nothing. And yet there is something and because of this something there is so much to be thankful for.

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    1. Whereas I would offer this question instead... "When given something, what is it in the human spirit that lacks in satisfaction while looking for bigger... better... best. When the something was sufficient."

      Vince, you and I would have so much fun at the Thanksgiving table, my friend!!! :)

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    2. I love what Augustine wrote, "You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it rests in you.”

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    3. Deb, that's such a truism... I love that.

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    4. Well said, Vince! We live in the world of something because of our Creator and Redeemer. Thanks be to God.

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    5. Hi Ruth:

      You ask why we want more when what we were given is sufficient.

      Because in nature there is no guarantee that 'sufficient' will carry you to the next meal. Eat fast, guard your food, and eat all you can when you can, and develop a taste for the most fatting foods. The way of the wolf.

      I like the Thanksgiving Day conversation idea. Maybe we could have a live running open conversation on Seekerville one day. (After the football game.)

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    6. Hi Jan:

      I agree with you. For those who hold there is no god, the question of why there is something rather than nothing seems impossible to answer. To say something was always there is far less belieable than that there is a creator.

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    7. Vince, I'd love that! :) Pass the stuffing, darling friend. Or do you call it dressing, there? (note, first potential point of discussion! Stuffing or dressing????)

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    8. Stuffing, Ruthy!

      Those philosophical arguments are so important, aren't they, Vince! That's why theologians study philosophy before they study theology. You always make us go a little deeper, Vince!

      Happy Thanksgiving to you and Linda!!! We love you both!

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  2. Debby, thank you for this beautiful post... and for gathering us all together under the banner of Thanksgiving. And with that in mind, Happy Thanksgiving to all of us... and to America. May God bless and keep our country... and may we lift our voices in prayer and honor as one nation, under God.

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    1. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours, Ruthy! And, as you said so beautifully, may God bless the USA!

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  3. Happy Thanksgiving to all the Seekers and Villagers! I'm thankful for so much - my faith, family, friends and freedom. And for the Seekerville blog! I've learned so much here. Thanks for a wonderful post, Debby!

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    1. I'm thankful for your success, Laura, and for all your wonderful blog comments over the years. Have a joyous Thanksgiving!

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  4. This morning I awoke with thoughts of Thanksgiving and praise for all the Lord has done for me not only this year but my whole life. I found myself silently singing the words of a chorus I learned as a little girl. "Thank you Lord for saving my soul. Thank you Lord for making me whole. Thank you Lord for giving to me, thy great Salvation so rich and free." The Lord is so good all the time. What an awesome way to begin the day.

    I am so grateful for all of you here in Seekerville.

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    1. Beautiful words, Wilani. Thank you for sharing. We're grateful for you, dear friend!

      Wishing you a joyous Thanksgiving!

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  5. Oh how beautifully said, love your books, writing and you. Hope you and your family have a blessed Thanksgiving

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    1. Melissa, thank you for your sweet comment! I so greatly appreciate your support! Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours! God bless you and keep you in His care!

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  6. Debby et al, this is beautiful. This has been a good year for me professionally, and I couldn't have done it without this site and these people.
    KB

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    1. You would have succeeded without Seekerville, I feel sure, KB! But having the encouragement and support of other writers always makes the journey more fun! So glad you're part of this blog community...a sister writer!

      Happy Thanksgiving!

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  7. Wonderful post for Thanksgiving, Debby! Thank you!

    And have a wonderful Thanksgiving Day, everyone!

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  8. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family, Jan!

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  9. I'm so thankful for the blessings of my family and my loving husband; for the blessings of clean water, electricity, a roof over my head, and a stable country to live in. And for finding Seekerville a few years ago and making friends with all of you warm and compassionate ladies who've helped me along the way on my writing journey. I"m with Kaybee - this has been a good year for me too, and I couldn't have done it without the encouragement and learning I've had from this site and all of you. So, thank you and I wish everyone a blessed Thanksgiving weekend!

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  10. Such a lovely reflection, Laurie! Clean water, electricity, a home and stable country...all so important. I'm grateful for them as well!

    So glad we've connected via Seekerville! We give thanks for you!

    Happy Thanksgiving!

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  11. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone. It was so nice hearing from so many of the Seekers, past and present. I am truly thankful for all of you and the friendships I have made in Seekerville. I am also grateful for so much in my life, including my faith and my family. I will be with much of my family tomorrow, but there will be an empty spot in the first holiday season without my mom. But I'm grateful I had her in my life for so long. Not everybody can say that.

    I wish many blessings on all of you tomorrow.

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    1. Sandy, we'll be facing the same thing with our first Thanksgiving without my father. I'll be thinking of you tomorrow. But I, too, am so thankful for the many years we did have.

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    2. Those empty chairs get us, don't they? Wise women to be grateful for the time we had... even through the bittersweet. God is good.

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  12. Sandy, I know how hard it is to not have your mother with you. Praying for you on this first Thanksgiving without her! So grateful for you and the way you bless all of us!

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  13. What wonderful sentiments! Thank you all for your sharing! And Debby, I'm so glad you did this post. Very uplifting!

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    1. Prayers for you and your family, Missy, this Thanksgiving as you remember your dad!

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  14. Happy Thanksgiving, Seekerville friends! It's been a busy year, but I couldn't let this holiday slip by without wishing you and yours warm holiday greetings from the Ozarks!

    Blessings to each of you! (Thrilled to soon set sail off "un-pubbed" island, but I'll be baaaack!) So, so grateful for Seekerville - for your friendship and dedication to writers. xo

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    1. Cynthia, don't leave us when you sail off the island. Okay? We always love seeing your posts and reading your uplifting comments.

      Happy Thanksgiving and writing congrats!

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    2. Agreeing with the wise Debby Giusti! Cynthia, we're so excited for you but still want you here... Right back at you!

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  15. Love this pause in all the busyness to reflect on all the things we have to be grateful for. Enjoyed reading all the Seekers lists -- we all share so many blessings! In addition I'm particularly grateful for the new windows as I watch yet another blizzard stir up wind and snow and I'm all cozy and snug inside. And I'm thankful for a healthy TBR pile that promises distraction from the things I'm not so grateful for. :-)

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    1. We love you, Kav, and are so very grateful for your support!

      A belated Happy Canadian Thanksgiving to you!

      Stay warm in that blizzard!

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  16. Such a beautiful post. The comments reflect many of my sentiments. I'm especially thankful for God's continual care and direction this past year. And for my supportive hubby who has been a great source of encouragement while on this writing journey. And for all the writers and readers at Seekerville who've inspired me to pursue my dream of publication. Happy Thanksgiving Day to everyone.

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  17. The same to you, dear Pat! Yes, agreeing with you about the wonderful men who support us as we follow our dreams.

    Blessings to you and yours!

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  18. All if you have expressed,more eloquently than I ever could, many of my same blessings. My faith in God that sustains me, my family who continues to love me and my fellow church members who support me in my faith journey. I am also very thankful that my love of reading continues to be fed by all of you and that my spiritual life is also nourished by your blog. I pray that all of you can enjoy a wonderful day tomorrow and a blessed holiday season!

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  19. Connie, we wish the same for you! We're so grateful to all the wonderful folks who read our stories so thank you for mentioning your love of reading and how this blog has nourished your spiritual life. Such a special comment that brings joy to my heart!

    Wishing you and yours a very Happy Thanksgiving and all God's blessings in the days ahead.

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  20. I just wanted to say thank you for all the inspiring posts. Also for each writer whose books I enjoy so much. May each of you have a Happy Thanksgiving filled with blessings, loved ones, and lots of delicious food.

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    1. Oh, thank you, dear Judy!!!! Happy Thanksgiving back to you and thank you for being such a proponent of Christian fiction!

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    2. Blessings to you, Judith! Thank you for your support!

      Happy Thanksgiving!

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    1. Wishing you the same, Caryl! Have a joyous Thanksgiving!

      We're grateful for your support!

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  22. I am thankful for God's faithfulness and family and friends. Carol A. carola245(at)hotmail(dot)com

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    1. Oh, Carol... that's lovely. Bless you this Thanksgiving day!

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    2. Love your three thankfuls...faithfulness, family, friends!

      Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, Carol! Blessings to you and yours!

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    1. Thanks for being part of this blog community, Mary Preston!

      Happy Thanksgiving!

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  24. Thanks to all of you for sharing! I am thankful for each of you, for your willingness to share with us, teach us and set the example for us! May each of you have a blessed and wonderful Thanksgiving!

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    1. Wasn't this a great way to welcome Thanksgiving? That Debby... she's a smart one! :)

      Thank you, Edwina! God bless you!

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    2. Edwina, we're grateful for you! Thanks for being part of our blog sisterhood and brotherhood. Blessings to you and your family!!!

      Happy Thanksgiving!

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  25. Happy Thanksgiving to my American fellow Seekervillagers! I will raise a mug of pumpkin spice latte in the spirit of thanksgiving. �� I am thankful for this blog and the contributors who put time, effort, and prayer into their posts. I have learned SO much from here, and appreciate being a part of this community. Blessings! (Lee-Ann B)

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  26. Lee-Ann, we're so grateful for you and thankful that you are part of this blog community!

    Happy Thanksgiving and abundant blessings to you and your family!

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  27. This year I am so thankful for a new church. The one I was going to was no longer preaching or teaching the bible. A friend took me to her church, I also listened to sermons online. I love this new church. I am learning more now about the word than I have for a very long time.. Thank God for good places to learn the word.

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  28. I'm thankful for having the chance to spend Thanksgiving with my Son & his family, good food & great talks. Thanks for your amazing generosity.

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