This Christmas

Posted: December 20, 2012 in Uncategorized
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Note: this will be the last post before Christmas. One may be published before the new year, however, that is not definite. But keep your eyes peeled.


When I began to have serious complications with my right leg, which was the epicenter of my first diagnosis, I would catch myself staring at people. A strange, and somewhat disturbing notion, I agree, but nonetheless quit frequent. This was particularly true in my freshman year of college, just a year ago, where I was surrounded by hundreds of healthy, active young people. But the only thing I had in common was the young part. In fact, most of my spring semester was spent in a wheelchair. I finally came to the conclusion that, yes, I was a bit envious of everyone else. My friends would go on spontaneous walks in downtown Minneapolis but I would be left to forfeit. Or we would all go to an ice-skating rink, but I would have to remain seated on the cold, hard stone steps while watching my friends have a good time, fall down, and get back up and laugh. Falling down! What I would give just to be able to fall down without injuring myself, let alone being able to use my legs properly, or technically leg, due to the amputation.

And yes, while I watched all these activities from the sidelines, I could not help having the faint, innocent thought of, “Why can’t I do that? Do they even know how grateful I would be just to do that?” But I knew that if I let this thought fester in my mind, as it still makes an appearance even today, that it would consume me to the point of bitterness. And I do not want to be bitter. To allow that thought control would mean to become a single-minded fool, thinking nothing but myself and never looking at the many multitudes of blessings around me.

Which brings me to the point I want to make; this Christmas, be thankful. Sure, Thanksgiving the holiday has passed, but the season of thanksgiving should never be banished from our hearts. God doesn’t want you going through life writing down all the cons. Because if you do, the list will never have an end and you will not have any pros to notice because a selfish, self-centered heart will drive them all away. The Psalmist wrote about how we should be thankful, first and foremost:

Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.           -Psalm 100:4-5

These two verses are quite simple but ever true in explanation. God commands us to be thankful and to worship him. And the reasons given are simply because the Lord is a merciful and loving God, and his promises will never be dismissed. Even if we have absolutely nothing, we must still be thankful. Understand, we look at thanksgiving as counting the blessings we can touch, feel, or see. What do most people say they are thankful for? Their families, their home, their jobs, their friends. All things well and good, but simply because God is who he is we must be thankful.

So this Christmas, as we gather around a tree to unwrap gifts, or to travel to see family, or enjoy a Christmas Eve service, remember to be thankful. Because, guaranteed, there are  many others who are less fortunate than us. Many during this time will spend Christmas in a hospital, or find out some devastating news, maybe even gather with an empty seat at the table. So celebrate the coming of Christ and all that God has done for us! And bask in the numerous blessings he has given us. But also celebrate the simple things, too, like walking, for instance. God Bless and have a merry Christmas.


  1. Lori Chepke says:

    You are amazing and inspiring. I pray for you. We have never met, but I try everyday to instill this kind of love and thanks in my children. Keep fighting, we will continue to keep praying. God bless you and your family. Merry Christmas.

  2. Pastor Patti says:

    Very well written! It is amazing how we always wish we could have more when ask God wants is for us to be thankful of what we do have. You are a blessing!

  3. Robin Kidd says:

    Well said Nick! So thankful for my God!

  4. jtburr2012 says:

    Thanks Nick, its hard to do sometimes even for everyone.

  5. Sandy Dop says:

    Thanks for reminding all of us of what is truly important! Praying for you and your family.

  6. Seth says:

    Great post Nick. I’ve never really thought about how much of a privilege being able to walk is. Hopefully I will learn to be more thankful for the little things this Christmas season. Have a healthy, fun, and relaxing Christmas.

  7. tani leasing says:

    o_o – I searched and found it. Thanks for the post. George Beek

  8. Joyce Brandt says:

    Oh Nick, we can be thankful God has given us another day. I like the saying, “Today is a gift, that’s why it’s called the ‘present’.”. And how often I thank God that I can see, hear, talk, even use this I-pad. There are so many things we take for granted–yes, even walking, touching our fingers together, basically moving around… We must be thankful for what we can do.

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