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Tuesday, December 31, 2019

It's Dec. 31st, New Year's Eve Day,
The Seventh Day of Christmas
Time to Evaluate 2019

It probably would be easy to take the approach of evaluation from a negative view, because as human beings, we are so vulnerable to even doing things which we really don't want to do. For example, we want to lose weight and don't want to eat sweets and carbohydrates every day, but somehow find ourselves doing exactly what we don't want to do. Our goals and dreams are not always in perfect alignment with our day-to-day longings.

It probably would be valuable, however, to deal with our short comings at some point, but certainly not in the first few new and fresh days of a new year. We have to celebrate the opportunity of adding another chapter to our life stories with each new arriving year. I have a hymn I used to enjoy singing every January (new year) and November (Thanksgiving). Its title is "Count Your Blessings." It encourages the singer to count them even before you begin to feel good about them, or even in the midst of misfortune.
These are lyrics:

When upon life's billows you are tempest tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done. 
Count your blessings, name them one by one;
Count your blessings, see what God hath done;
Count your blessings, name them one by one;
Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.
Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, ev'ry doubt will fly,
And you will be singing as the days go by. (Refrain)
When you look at others with their lands and gold,
Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold;
Count your many blessings, money cannot buy
Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high. (Refrain)
So, amid the conflict, whether great or small,
Do not be discouraged, God is over all;
Count your many blessings, angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journey's end. (Refrain)

The Story Behind Count Your Blessings

Johnson Oatman did not carry the same natural singing ability of his father but he was greatly gifted in song writing! After studying ministry and serving in Methodist churches, Johnson wrote over 5,500 songs in his lifetime!
"Count Your Blessings" is a wonderful song to sing any day of the year as a reminder of the many blessings of God, even during hardships. You will feel joy and contentment after joining in with this hymn!

If ever you feel the desire to sing it, stop by my cottage and I'll play it and join you in singing it! Or if you prefer, you can just sit, enjoy, and meditate on it; or just, as you listen and take in the words, let the Spirit warm your heart!

Have a truly happy and joyous New Year!

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