There was a dampness in the air as I headed into work early this morning, but the temperature was above freezing so there was no frost or ice to deal with. Page 317 had no specific soundtrack to start the day, but I did find myself singing lines from a variety of hymns as I went about my morning tasks. After making some small adjustments last week to try to bring balance to some of the room temperatures, including my office, I walked into a very cold office this morning. My first thought was that the changes I had made actually backfired, but as I checked some other rooms and investigated further I discovered that one of the boilers in the building wasn’t heating. After I finished getting the building ready for the day I turned my attention to doing what troubleshooting I could on the boiler. My efforts brought no improvement so I called a service tech and he said he could be out sometime during the day.
With that project on hold, I turned my attention to working on the prayer guide for next week. With the Thanksgiving holiday taking place next week in the United States, I was pretty sure I wanted to do something based the idea of thankfulness. As I looked back in my records, it appears that I have used the same prayer guide for Thanksgiving week each year with only minor adjustments. While I could have done that again, I felt that I needed to take a fresh look at the topic this year as I spent time with God on this prayer guide. Rather than use the old one, or even deliberately not use topics from the old one, I decided to simply approach the topic of giving thanks from a blank slate as I would with any other topic on any other week — if the daily topics overlapped ones from previous years, that would be okay and if not, that would be okay too. As I spent time in prayer and Bible study, the prayer guide came together and I haven’t even looked to see how different or similar it is to the one from the past years. 🙂
By the time the prayer guide was written, the morning was nearly over. The service tech had not arrived yet, so I turned my attention to formatting and scheduling the prayer guide to be published on Sunday. As I worked, the sun kept coming out from behind the clouds from time to time and the birds began to fill the brush in search of food. Today’s photo is of one of the cardinals as she sat in the midst of a group of berries. Once the prayer guide was done and it was scheduled for the weekend, I turned my attention to getting some tasks done in preparation for the International Conference on Missions later this week. As I worked, the service tech came to work on the boiler issue. After doing some testing, he discovered the electronic gas valve was bad which meant it wasn’t letting gas through in order for the boiler to fire and provide heat. After replacing the valve, the boiler fired right up and should eventually provide the desired heat. I had checked everything I could, and even tried to manually light the burner, but without fuel there would be no flame no matter how hard I tried.
Once the boiler was running it was late afternoon and I had put in a long day, so I put my work on pause and headed home. The evening has been spent relaxing and working at the writing of today’s page. With a long week ahead of me, I will try to get this written early and see if I can get to sleep early.
As I reflect on the day, here are some thoughts/lessons that stand out to me:
- If you don’t think small changes can make much difference, try driving in light rain when it is 30 degrees out compared to the same drive when it is 34 degrees.
- Sometimes the problems you face are of your own doing and sometimes they are not.
- It is good to know what you can actually do and when it is time to call someone who knows how to do what you can’t.
- Sometimes the easy path is the right one to take. Other times it is not. Wisdom is spending time with God to see which one He would have you take.
- Giving thanks is a topic that probably cannot be stressed enough.
- While Thanksgiving may be an annual holiday, it ought to be a daily way of life for God’s children.
- Sometimes avoiding something because you’ve already done it can cause you to miss what you ought to be doing. Repeating a good thing isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
- Starting fresh with an open mind, a blank page, and an open Bible seems to be my best recipe for a useful prayer guide.
- Growing up on the farm, I used to often hear, and live by, the saying, “you have to make hay while the sun shines.” It seems like the birds understand that concept in their terms.