Have a thankful heart to have a joyful one.

Us three.

Be thankful to be joyful.  They said.  Okay, well I am very thankful!  So, I will be sharing with you all what I am thankful for.  I’ve got to get with the times already.  Of course I would write about being thankful this week, too, in light of the holiday.  While we are on the subject and talking about writing, I don’t write enough I know.  I plan to change all of that soon.  Do not worry about that.  So, first, lots of challenges this week, for your heart, mind, and body!

[ Scroll all the way down to go straight to the weekly mind and body challenge. ]

But first, take my thankful challenge.

My thankful challenge.  If you are not thankful yet, get thankful!  And if you already know what you are thankful for, and if you are not already on the FB thankful train, that where you post what you are thankful for, or if you haven’t pulled the person to the side to tell them you are thankful for them, or if you haven’t written it down.  If you are thankful and have done just one or none of these things, then what are you waiting for?!  If you are thankful, let it show always, and especially this week!  I pray all of you have thanks and share thanks this week!  I pray for you all that your hearts are thankful, joyful, and content.

That’s right.  This is also a Monday post and where I also tell you what all I did or didn’t do this week,  in addition to me posting about why I am thankful, as I start a little mini-series of posts this week about what all I am thankful for.  J  By the way, I didn’t do a whole lot on Sunday.  Let’s be honest.  I mean, my time is so valuable these days, I feel guilty just lying around here ever, which is why I feel just a little guilty for sharing that this actually went on a good part of the day Sunday, yesterday, where I just lie around and do nothing.  “Thankfully” this is not all that I did over the weekend.  I spent all of Friday night studying at my Mom’s house where Cayden’s xbox is currently set up.  ALL NIGHTER!  Then I went into work for a couple hours, before my face to face class Saturday afternoon that’s 1-5.  Then I scooped C from Mom’s house, and grabbed dessert and a good Red Box, possibly the best red box, San Andreas.  But C and I watched 2 movies this night, and it was every bit of glorious as a Saturday movie night- in can be!  Sunday morning we made it to early service, where Cayden not only joined me for regular Church, (his class was cancelled), but we were early enough to grab donuts, hot chocolate for him, and coffee for me.

This does bring me right to what I am thankful for first, not to be confused with what I am most thankful for.  My thankful posts are in no particular order.

Today and every day, I am thankful for my freedom.  For free will.  I am thankful for the ability to do what is right and to make mistakes.  I am thankful for days I can be a little lazy and the ones I decide to get a lot done.  I am also thankful for forgiveness, and for knowing better.  I’m thankful for my Maker, and for his forgiveness.  I am thankful for my education, and that it helps me know better even more.  I am also very thankful for my upbringing because it’s helped me learn to want to be better by doing better because I know better.  I am thankful to my mother.  By the way, I will have you know that she also spent the better part of a whole hour of her precious time on the phone with me yesterday.  What are you thankful for?

“We have no idea what tomorrow will bring, but today is overflowing with potential.”  -Allan Lokos  (OLLU University Ministry)

This week’s challenge for your mind and also in light of what I am studying and the recent current world events:  I am also leaving you with this challenge which comes from my Cultural Anthropology course.  The course actually would have been a great source for blog posts, if only I had taken full advantage at the beginning instead of waiting till the end.

“This week,” it says, “…is a perfect time to talk about religious fundamentalism.”  Continued, “Fundamental ideas often stem from paranoia.  We see this in the information of cults and religious extremists.”  My professor goes on and suggests this 11 minute Podcast from NPR about ISIS.  “While ISIS is on the minds of most people around the world now, we have seen similar attacks from other groups.  Examples include KKK and their burning of churches and Catholic extremists blowing up abortion clinics.  Also of concern is the recruiting and subsequent mass suicide in cult groups.  Is this something a society can police, help, or…”  She really does pause here and not finish, because she says she does not have the answer.  It’s an open ended question to all of us taking her course and for discussion.

What are your thoughts?

Understanding the Intent of Isis

“In the past, researchers have said that people who are attracted to these groups are uneducated, poor, or marginalized, but we are learning that this is not necessarily true. The psychological profile has changed.”  -Professor R.  OLLU’s online Cultural Anthropology course, fall 2015.

I will post a body challenge later today!  How about a body/food challenge!  Since this week we will also be doing a lot of extra eating!!

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