In November we celebrated Thanksgiving.
At that time, I researched the origin of the holiday. It is a fascinating story of how the Indians helped the Pilgrims survive their second year. It reminded me of the many people who open doors, encourage, provide assistance and allow us to stand on their shoulders as we seek to move forward in life and ministry.
Even though my thoughts are about Thanksgiving, I believe they are applicable to the Christmas season as well. I believe it is a season of thanksgiving for what God did for us in sending His Son, Jesus.
My parents sacrificed to provide for five children. Dad traveled the world as a sailor, and Mom was a firm, yet loving mother. She was the best cook and seamstress in our town. I recently told someone that we were poor, but clean and neat. I am thankful for my parents, now living in the presence of our Lord.
My siblings are the best. A family with five children, we enjoyed life like no other family on the block. We are all living in California and cherish the times when we get together to reminisce about our childhood. So many years have come and gone, but our love for each other grows daily.
I have friends galore! As I write this, one of my dearest friends is struggling for life. Heart attacks this week have brought him close to death. In a few hours I will drive to the cardiac care unit of a hospital in Southern California to visit him, a friend who was already living in the U.S. when I arrived in 1964.
More than anything, I am thankful to God for His love, salvation, forgiveness and guidance in every aspect of my life.
He guided me to Carmen - my wife, friend and companion. He provided two wonderful boys - Carlos and Eddie. He has blessed me so far with three grandchildren - Sohaila, Seanna and Losiah. He also has blessed me with a wonderful daughter-in-law - Heather - and a great future daughter-in-law - Katie.
During this Christmas season, let's be thankful to God for His "indescribable gift." A gift isn't a gift unless it's given away. Let's make it a point to give the greatest gift of all - Jesus!