Thursday, January 13, 2011

Thankful Thursday: Winter

Happy Thursday!

This week the weather has been wacky all over the country with snow falling across the majority of the United States. The past two days have been bitterly cold here in the Midwest. As I write it is a whopping six degrees outside with a windchill of -13. As cold as that sounds it is 10 degrees warmer today than it was yesterday!

I don't think my feet ever warmed up yesterday! I was feeling a bit sorry for my poor chilled feet, but then I got thinking about how fortunate my feet are to be just chilled and not frozen. To complain about being cold in a house where I could probably turn up the furnace or go to my well-stocked closet and grab another article of clothing to put on started to seem a bit silly. It is totally, painfully, horribly cold outside, but I can choose to remain inside my home.

What if I didn't have that choice? I am thankful I do have a choice, but many do not. According to a study done in 2009 by USA Today, 1.6 million people are homeless in this country. Some due to drug and alcohol addictions, others who made a few wrong turns in life, and others simply down on their luck and out of the financial resources to maintain a home. Staggering numbers of people have nowhere to lay their heads at night. Nowhere to shelter themselves from snow, rain or wind. No hope to thaw out their frozen fingers and toes.

I was shocked to discover how many homeless children there are in our community. The economic downturn has pushed many from teetering on the edge to over the brink and into the streets. Can you even fathom being outside in temperatures of -20 and below? Goodness! I can't stand being outside at 20 above zero! Both my daughters worked on service projects this year that provided simple fleece tie blankets for children who are homeless. I hope and pray that those blankets are each keeping a child warm enough to survive in these bitter temperatures.

If you have an overstocked linen closet, coat closet or sock drawer, please consider donating them to an agency in your community that can distribute your abundance to someone who really needs it right now. If you live in Sioux City or the surrounding area there is a warm clothing drive here next week. Here is a link to the article in the Sioux City Journal about how you can help.

I am thankful for my warm house, my warm slippers, my favorite warm fleece shirt, my comfortable warm bed and the space heater in my office that tries very hard to keep up with the cold air here.

What are you thankful for this Thursday?

In His Peace -

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