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Thursday, November 27, 2014

26 of what we are Thankful for this Year.

In November 1st, I started to thank one by one via Instagram on what me and my family are thankful for. Amidst the challenges and needs, if I tend to focus on those negative needs and challenge, it becomes a burden.  Just thinking about that one need such as:  finding a job, financing our business, helping my aging parents and other really depressing moments may become a burden to others too.  1 Thessalonians 5:18 says Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

All these blessings are not meant to brag or show how our life is so blessed, we still have needs and struggles.  But all these gratefulness are for the grace we were given from my Savior.  We know that all these blessings comes from my Provider.  James 1:17 says:  Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.

So don’t seek help or blessings from me or people.  Seek blessings and guidance and He will provide.  Our Lord said from Philippians 4:6, do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Many of our needs are not broadcasted on social media but between us and God and sometimes to our group with the same faith.  We believe that prayers and gratitude can accomplish many things and reach all our goals.  God said in Psalm 20:4, May he grant you your heart’s desire and fulfill all your plans!

Here are 26 based on our 26 Day Countdown as posted daily on our social media.  Don't forget to checkout those photo collages at the end:

26: Grace Bible production team. 

25: People caring for mom keeping her healthy in California. 

24: Renewal of Vow.

23: Trip to London.  Thanks to our family host Ana, our 4 day visit to UK was the most memorable seeing some of the best sights in the world:  Buckingham Palace, London Eye, National Gallery, Tower of London, Big Ben, London Dungeon, Harrods, daily Metro rides to Oxford, Picadilly, Trafalgar, etc.

22: Veteran. Thanks for being a part of the 1% of the population who have served and retired after 23 years.

21: Our positive health and accident free year.  Learning and living a positive healthy lifestyle.

20: Toastmasters, Knights of Columbus, Trusted Compass and other weekly networking. 

19: People caring for Dad keeping him healthy in the Philippines.

18: Virginia Beach public facilities.

17: Trip to Germany.  Berlin, Hamburg, Ramstein, Kaiserlautern and living with Kristina of Berlin as our British local host for a week.  What an awesome experience of nature, city life.
16: Financial because of Savvy Wife, Faithful Provider & Frugal Lifestyle.
15: Trip to France (Paris, Versailles, Lille, Louvre and other suburbs) and getting acquainted with Nat and Joel.  Thanks to manang Mel for introducing us and staying with them for a week in Versailles.
14:  Family time after Navy Retirement (Movies, sports, house chores).
13:  Daily meet up at the Beach.  Meeting all the community, various breeds of dogs, working out and quiet moments, trip to beach park.
12:  Trip to Sweden (Malmo) and meeting our very cool Scandinavian host, Lars for 4 days.
11:  Retirement Ceremony at Ely Hall with Friends and family.  What an event (see our  YouTube for one hour ceremony, speech).
10:  Our move to Virginia Beach.  The benefit of going to one of the best school in VA and beautiful beach community neighborhood.  Near every single best restaurant, shops, museums, State park, etc.  All within 10 miles.  And the Beach?  I can swim even without wet suit I use to wear in California.
9:  Trip to Prague, Czech Republic and getting acquainted with Sondra for 4 days.
8:  Trip to Denmark Copenhagen and traveling highlights of other Scandinavian culture.
7:  Getting rid of Cable TV and hacking our Electronic lifestyle with Apps and useful gadgets.  (see www.tonyastro.com for how I save hundreds of $$$ using appropriate Apps & Tools)
6:  Being a freelance counselor, entrepreneur, public speaker, blogger and other means to keep me busy, creative, timely and eventually more useful.
5:  DAV, Medical and retirement benefits.
4: Our Monday group and friends.  Real people who tag, comments & Like in our face.  All the dinner, get together and being open to one another.  Thanks Eric, Destiny, Sylvia, Don, Jennifer, Brad, Laurie, Brett, Amy for all your real friendship and accountability with our faith.  Lito, Joyce, Lalaine & other old time friends – thanks for being there.
3:  Our super nice neighborhood.   Dave, Dale, Dee, Fely and the Tuesday potluck and special holiday parties at the beach.  Thanks for making this place a resort life neighborhood.
2:   Trip to Amsterdam, Netherlands.  Thanks to our host Pierre and Filipino friends for making our 4 day stay in Holland and true memorable experience:  The Heineken Beer factory, Sam’s biking in the busy street of Amsterdam (the bike capital of the world), subway, museum, basketball with locals.
1:  Trip to Brussel, Belgium.  The square and food was the best.  Very European.  Visit to EU capital and the daily bus ride at night and living the local with Tone, our Vietnamese host.

Those are just my random blessings we had this year that took place from last Thanksgiving to 2014. I am pretty sure there is more of those (some seems redundant from last year), like the people who supported and gave us opportunity to move on and grow (we did not mention all that I may miss some).  There are also needs and concerns that is better discuss in private and with close friends.  Maybe I can write those when there is also holiday called Needs Day or Whining Day.  

We know, whatever we do and receive, the credit is to our Father.  Colossians 3:17, And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

So next time when I post something nice about our life, it’s not bragging, it’s giving thanks.  Remember what He said in Isaiah 12:4-5, And you will say in that day: “Give thanks to the Lord, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the peoples, proclaim that his name is exalted. “Sing praises to the Lord, for he has done gloriously; let this be made known in all the earth.

PS.  Special thanks to Sam & Myla.  Here is some highlight of them together this year:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W7f3tOhUHSM


































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