Thankfulness From Your Past

           – Thankfulness From Your Past-

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With it being Thanksgiving season, no way could I not have thankfulness as my subject for a few weeks. Something I read recently caused me to think how whats taken place in the past can affect how thankful we are at life today. I totally agree.

Even though my upbringing in the past wasn’t picture perfect, and even though my past unplanned pregnancy wasn’t exactly what I dreamed of, (1*) and since I can easily say I would have preferred not to have gone through my past brain illness ordeal, (2*) a big part of me is still thankful for each trial. God covered me with the strongest umbrella of love, obviously keeping more difficult hardships from falling on me that could have occurred. Every little spot Christ proved He was there has me ready for what ever comes my way from now on. Yes, tears from sorrow still show. And yes, many times I do wish that certain things wouldn’t have happened. We all do. Yet looking at my past has sure helped keep me going through life, not worrying too much on what lies ahead.

Regarding past trials you’ve endured, can you see how God’s strong hands were carrying you? Give it some thought and I bet you can. And if so, then try to keep it floating in your mind a bit more than before. Don’t let those thoughts get pushed under the rug. Instead, allow your ‘past’ to encourage your ‘now’.

There are times in our lives when we have to realize our past is precisely what it is, and we cannot change it. But we can change the story we tell ourselves about it, and by doing that, we can change the future.  – Eleanor Brown

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1* – Click here to read a bit about my pregnancy.

2* – Click here to read ab it about my illness.

 

Marianne Petersen’s book God and Your Pillow is now available. (Amazon) – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs and read more on her blog, marimemoirs.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blessings of My Unplanned Pregnancy Unwrapped (Part 1)

     – Blessings of My Unplanned Pregnancy Unwrapped –

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I can’t help but share how it was obvious God, my Heavenly Father, proved He was holding me, a nineteen year old, after admitting I had totally messed up. In the midst of my unplanned pregnancy, I felt more of a need to cling to God. It was a must. My heart, soul, and mind would have overflowed with guilt if I did not feel His forgiveness.

As month after month being pregnant went by, He made sure I could tell that, as long as I included Him in this tough time, He was there – noticeably there – making it imposable for me not to thank Him many times. Peace began to form inside me as I soaked up the fact that God isn’t just my Lord and King, but my Father. It was impossible not to have ‘Thank you, God’ thoughts as I saw His hand here and there while my tummy grew.

As I showed recently, He showed me one obvious sign He was there. (1*) I’ve decided to share a few other things that were showing up that I was, slowly but surely, beginning to give God credit for. I’ll show a different one on each post for a while, being that they’re worth more than a few sentences to describe.

 

Of course I must start with the very first happening that I realized later on God planned. At the time it happened it was far from being listed in any ‘Thank you, God’ category. The following excerpt is from my book God and My Pillow – a memoir – (available, Lord willing, by mid-March)

See if you can guess why I’m thankful to God for what took place.


During all the page flipping, it felt like I was a spy who was taking forever to find an important number. I can’t believe I’m doing this. I can’t believe I’m doing this. I guess I’ll look under ‘Pregnancy Test.’ Okay, let’s see. Planned Parenthood. This sure wasn’t ‘planned,’ but I guess I have to ‘plan’ something if I am.

That was the first one I noticed. After all, that’s what the bold wording is supposed to do, right? Make you notice. Well, it worked. I was so nervous pressing those numbers.

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Ring, ring. Ring, ring. Ring, ring. Ring, ring.
Hmmm. No answer. Darn it. I’ll try another one. I’ll flip back a bit and do more alphabetical order. Let’s see, Crisis Pregnancy Center. This sure is a crisis for me if I’m pregnant. I have to try this one.
Ring, ring. Ring, ring.
Oh, please. Oh, please be open! PLEASE be op…
“Hello. Crisis Pregnancy Center. How can I help you?”
Please tell me I’m not pregnant. “Just seeing if you are open today. Really? Right now? Thank you.” Click.


 

I still thank God, thirty-one years later, for having that first place I called be closed. By reading this, and my entire book, you will discover why I thank God, to this day, for not allowing anyone to answer that first phone call. If someone did, well…I don’t even want to think about it.

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More ‘Thank you God‘s to follow.

1* – Click here to read what that first thank-filled story I shared.

 

Marianne Petersen’s book God and Your Pillow is now available. (Amazon) – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs and read more on her blog, marimemoirs.com.

The Word ‘Thankful’ All Folded Up (Part 3)

           – The Word ‘Thankful’ All Folded Up (Part 3) –

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Did you ever predict you would learn something but didn’t know what the lesson might be? That was me a few years back. After a few tougher-than-normal trials had taken place, and a few years went by, I grasped the fact that I would learn something from them, but just wasn’t sure what. Here, let me explain.

As my last two posts shared, (1*2*) two somewhat life-changing ordeals had my thoughts of thankfulness all folded up and tossed in the back pocket of my jeans. (Pictorially speaking, of course.) But God guided me to understand that He was writing the story and had bigger plans I couldn’t yet see.

As years went by, I took a few verses to heart:

Proverbs 16:9 A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.

Proverbs 19:21 Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.

So, I waited . . . and waited . . . and yes, waited, as our family of four turned into a family of six. I had shared my unplanned pregnancy and illness story with many by this time. As each year passed, comments of “You should let others know about what God did for you” kept popping up. Slowly but surely, the question of why I’m thankful for these trials was beginning to get answered.

First, my pregnancy. An older post shares how different comments and requests to share my pregnancy were God’s way to get that story in writing; thus my book, God and My Pillow. (3*) Helping others going through that same ordeal is now a must, knowing God’s been encouraging me from the start.

Second, my illness. In another older post (4*) I shared about connecting with that encephalitic support website, meeting others who had gone through the same type of illness. I wound up encouraging others who were recently hit with similar brain damage. They needed to hear from one who had experienced what they were, at the time, dealing with. A book is now in the making to cover that, in hopes of encouraging those, showing how God held me and how He can hold them as well.

Hearing others tell me how helpful these efforts have been has caused me, in a way, to be almost thankful for these two events. I appreciate so much more now, knowing that if you never experienced pain, sorrow, and hurt, you would never recognize good health, the simple joys in life, and just how precious having Christ by your side can be.  

Most people have had their share of hard times and I’m certain they are far from over. But instead of being sad, frustrated, and/or angry about them, I hope my stories help others pull that little piece of paper with the word ‘thankful’ on it out of their own back pocket. 

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Marianne Petersen’s book God and Your Pillow is now available. (Amazon) – You can follow Marianne on Twitter at @marimemoirs and read more on her blog, marimemoirs.com.