Showing ♥ Appreciation

    Winter's Wonderland
Winter’s Wonderland

It is one thing to have a name listed along with many others in scripture. It is quite another when a notation is made along with that name designating what they did. This is the case of one man by the name of; “Mattaniah…the leader who began the thanksgiving with prayer.” Nehemiah 11: 17.  Of the 284 Levites who lived in Jerusalem he is mentioned twice and both times with the notation that he led prayer with thanksgiving. Yet a third time he is mentioned in a group of Levites who gave praise and thanks within the city. (Nehemiah 11:17, 12:8, 24-25).

A personality trait worthy of pursuing is to exhibit a sincere attitude of appreciation with abundant expressions of gratitude for what we have in this life. We do not know much about Mattaniah. He was a Levite, servant to the priests, gatekeeper but above all else God wanted us to know him as a man who lead out with thanksgiving in his prayers. Wow!

“The more you express gratitude for what you have the more you will have to express gratitude for.“– Zig Ziglar

 We identify ourselves often by the position or place in the family we hold. But others identify us by the attitude we display. Yes, Mattaniah had a position; Levite and gatekeeper. His attitude of gratitude though made all the difference in how his name was listed.

This leads me to ponder the following question:

When my name is listed do I want to be remembered solely by the position I held, or by the attitude I displayed while holding that position?  Mattaniah received both!


APPRECIATION! Its a beautiful thing
APPRECIATION! Its a beautiful thing

Appreciation, thankfulness, and graciousness; these words convey a sense of warmth and acceptance of others. When the meaning of these words become ingrained in the way I live peace reigns in my soul. I become much better at facing and dealing with day to day challenges. I make decisions with ease. A much better person emerges, which is more likable, more approachable and one who is accepted into more social circles enthusiastically. Why does this remarkable change take place? Mattaniah shows us the way; he “began” with thanksgiving. His starting point was; thankfulness.

When I begin each day with an appreciative attitude it sets the tone for the whole day and all the interactions I have with others.

Welcome to the “richer side of life“,



The Move

North Carolina Mountains
North Carolina Mountains

Out-To Go In!

Then He brought us out from there that He might bring us in, to give us the land of which He swore to our fathers. Deuteronomy 6:23. This is an interesting scripture.  The journey is not just to leave but most importantly to arrive! When considering a move, think destination first, leaving last. I love the teaching of this scripture; it has become one of my favorites. The poignancy of the thought, ‘He brought them out to take them in’ resonates deep in my spirit. God doesn’t begin a journey without a destination in mind. My dad taught me; “Never leave a job before you have another one lined up”. “Don’t buy a house until the one you own is sold”. “Pay off current debt before making new financial commitments”. “Spend less than you make”. “He slept beneath the moon; He basked beneath the sun, He lived a life of going-to-do; and died with nothing done.” English playwright, James Albery.  [Probably because he did not know where he was going!] The purpose of moving out is moving in! Never forget that! Let us seriously consider where we are going BEFORE  leaving where we are. God reminded them that they were going to move to the land He had earlier promised to their fathers. Work and careers awaited them at the completion of the journey. Grapes were ripening on the vines. The houses and barns were already built for them in the Promised Land. Probably one of the most pathetic sights witnessed by God was seeing the barren region between the land of bondage and the land of promise and viewing people aimlessly wandering in circles. Preparation time is well spent considering how to shorten the distance between where we are and where we want to be. Summing up what my dad taught me is this; Know where you’re going before you begin the trip; before you leap, consider your landing! This will give us a much richer life both now and in the future. Welcome to the richer side of life, Richard