praise and gratitude as a backdrop for living


Praise the Lord!
Give thanks to the Lord because he is good!
    His faithful love will last forever!
 No one can describe how great the Lord really is.
    No one can praise him enough.
 Those who obey his commands are happy.
    They do good things all the time. – Psalm 106:1-3

Naomi with David and Beks

Today my thoughts, meditations, and prayers are turned toward gratitude. I am genuinely thankful for the day to day life we experience here in Wake Forest. Rebekah and I are challenged but fulfilled in our work, we have completely fallen in love with our church family, we enjoy the community here immensely, this part of North Carolina is beautiful, the climate is perfect, my parents are happy in the house next door, and we enjoy the added blessing of having Naomi, Craig, and the grandchildren just a couple of hours away in Richmond (see photo).

Today my work schedule has me developing a Powerpoint presentation for the Presbytery of New Hope, writing my column for Wake Forest Today, doing some research to support a covenant group article I’m writing for United Methodist Men, preparing my lesson for the Wednesday evening men’s Bible-study group at WFPC, and beginning the three-month process of writing a new book.

IMG_2029Occasionally, I will wander out onto the deck for a coffee break, and enjoy the dense backdrop of green that’s filled in over the past few weeks. My herb garden is coming back, and – down in the garden – the hydrangea are beginning to blossom.

Whatever I’m up to – working, relaxing, leading, cleaning the kitchen, walking the dog – it’s all going to be against the backdrop of the words in Psalm 106: “No one can describe how great the Lord really is! No one can praise him enough!” This is my thought for the day; this is my constant refrain.

Life is not necessarily easy; the responsibilities and the opportunities Rebekah and I have don’t always make for a smooth ride; the climate may be ideal, but sometimes the storms come and it rains hard; life and ministry are both complicated and messy; we didn’t leave Florida and turn the page to this new chapter in order to coast… Yet, “Praise the Lord! Give thanks to the Lord because he is good! His faithful love will last forever!”

These photos are all affirmations, gratitudes, blessings, and glimpses of my joy – DEREK





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