Friday, July 5, 2013


The Fourth of July and fireworks go hand in hand.  It's a week long celebration in my neighborhood as people take advantage of the availability of these booming noisemakers.  There are fireworks all week long preparing us for the big day.  I remember watching fireworks on the Belvedere as a child... and being afraid because they were so loud.  I would stand next to my parents with my hands over my ears to soften the intensity.  And apparently, my youngest son takes after me because when he had the opportunity to watch fireworks this week, he chose to play hide and seek inside because he was afraid.  I understand.

I found myself in reflective mode while watching the fireworks this year.  This was somewhat out of character for me, because I'm not one to wonder how things work.  But as I watched the brightly colored explosions, my mind filled with questions like how do they make fireworks?  How do they color them?  What makes them different?  I know, quite random, but that's where my mind went.  And obviously it was a fleeting thought, because I didn't spend anytime on the internet researching the answers later. 

The neighborhood fireworks display that I watched was very impressive.  It lasted about 30 minutes and was filled with a rainbow of fireworks... all different shapes and colors and sizes and sounds.  I forgot how the boom can make your teeth rattle.  And those white, small, really loud fireworks do that to me.  I became intrigued by how unique each firework was... some were huge and had extra sparkles at the end when you thought it was finished.  Others would have a random spark shoot sideways like a shooting star.  Some were colorful... others were loud.  Some crackled after the explosion and others shimmered as they faded away.  You never knew what was coming next.  And it was delightful when the fireworks had a surprise built in.  We oooohed and ahhhed.  OK, I'm exaggerating a bit, but it really was quite beautiful.

The fireworks led me to reflect on God and His blessings.  He's constantly showering us with blessings of all shapes and sizes and colors.  Some blessings make you glow and shimmer long after you receive it.  Others can be small and gentle.  And some blessings even have an added surprise built in that is completely unexpected. You never know what's next in the blessing department, and it's exciting to sit, watch and see what blessings God ignites for you next.

Do you notice the blessings that God is igniting for you each day?  Have you considered how many blessings you miss because you become so used to them that you forget... or maybe you don't even notice the blessings because you're distracted by your circumstances?  How would your life be different if you were actually watching for the blessings, just like I sat and watched for the fireworks to ignite?  Let's ask our Father God to open our eyes and ears so we can experience each blessings He has for us.  And let's take time to thank Him for the blessings we receive.  Here's some verses to encourage us to thank God for the blessings:

1 Thessalonians 5:18
give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

Ephesians 1:3
[ Praise for Spiritual Blessings in Christ ] Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.

Psalm 100

A psalm. For giving grateful praise.

Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.
    Worship the Lord with gladness;
    come before him with joyful songs.
Know that the Lord is God.
    It is he who made us, and we are his[a];
    we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
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.
Watch for the blessing fireworks.  You don't want to miss even one... because they are all unique and perfectly planned just for you.  And may your life ignite with praise as you start recognizing the blessings each day. 

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