October 10, 2015

Thanks to God by Sharon Espeseth

You may recall that in June 2014 my husband and I downsized and sold our dream home. We continued to downsize while living in a rental place that didn't suit us. During that period, my husband had a mini stroke, and I had a bout of depression. This June we downsized further and moved into a half duplex that is peaceful and more suitable for us. During the actual move, Hank was hospitalized, but our kids moved us anyway. Hank came home to our new place that seemed calm in comparison to our previous manor.

Recently, Ruth Snyder, president and fellow InScriber, created a poster of a few verses from Psalm 107. This chapter begins with, "Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever." The Psalmist admonishes those who have been redeemed by the Lord from the hand of the foe to tell their story.

For about the next 25 verses of this chapter, we read of people enduring tribulations, storms, and illness. We see the Lord come to their rescue and they are encouraged to give thanks. In verse 28, we read, ". . . They cried out to the Lord in their trouble and he brought them out of their distress."

Hank and I had called out to God, and we believe he delivered from a stressful situation. I had faith that we would find the right place. Our neighbours, rather new friends brought us a copy of an online ad for this duplex. Things started falling into place.

Further in Psalms 107, we read, "(God) had stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea were hushed. They were glad when it grew calm, and he guided them to their desired haven." For the present and near future, this home will be our "desired haven."

Our half duplex, only two-years old, is right for us. Our new home requires less work and upkeep. Hank and I feel more at home, and I am comfortable writing here. Not everything is in perfect order yet, but we are thankful to have landed well. As the Psalmist continues, "Let (us) give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for (us)."

A couple months back, InScribe bloggers were discussing a report on our summer writing. For accountability purposes, I can say I have done the following writerly activities--

1.  keeping up with my InScribe blog.

2.  trying 25-minute writing sessions with some success.

Writing for 25 minutes

3.  enjoying morning writing sessions with a writing friend at the lake

4.  daily Bible readings and devotions

5.  reading and commenting on InScribe Writers Online

6.  entering a few Word Challenges. (Thank you, Glynis Belec.)

7.  submitting to a few contests. Just when I thought I had lost my writing flow, I was awarded
     first in the InScribe Fall Contest in Creative Non-fiction. I am thankful for the great
     encouragement this award brought me after a dry spell.

8.  reading books that survived downsizing

9.  editing for a writing friend and a family member who is working on her master's degree

10.  attending InScribe Fall Conference

C. S. Lewis has said, "Faith is the art of holding onto things in spite of your changing mood and circumstances." With God's help and grace, I'm trying to relinquish control and trust God even in the tough times.

Saint Pius of Pietrelcina says, "You ought to ask our Lord for just one thing: to love him. All the rest should be thanksgiving."

The old Swedish hymn, "Tack, O Gud," has always been part of my life. Here is a YouTube English version of the song, www.youtube.com/watch?v=vdkzqL4GV_goriginally written in Swedish by August Ludvig Storm in 1891. This man's expression of faith is still valid today.


  1. Yes, Sharon, we have to tell the story of God's goodness. We receive his great gifts, then our job is to proclaim that. Thank you for sharing the truth of a long journey of change to where you're finally in a place where you can see some stability. And the people who came alongside to help? God's provision as well! May he bless your time with him and with your pen and paper.

  2. God always comes through doesn't he! We are thankful for you Sharon!

  3. Sharon--I am so glad you are getting settled into your place and getting some writerly activities done. It was good to see you at conference. And I really like that Saint Pius quote. Life really is all about loving Jesus, isn't it?!

  4. Good morning, ladies. It was good to see all of you at Fall Conference too. Thank you for your encouraging comments about our arriving, my husband and I, on the sunny end of the tunnel we seem to have been travelling through. I am proclaiming to all, as you say, Bobbi. that God has come through for us again. (Tracy's words!) I too, Connie, appreciate the quote from St. Pius. Happy Thanksgiving to all readers.

  5. Sharon, this post is very encouraging for me - encouraging because God IS faithful, we CAN see His light in darkness, and you give very practical ways we can ensure thankfulness reigns (write, write, write, write with God, write with a friend, read, help others write... I'm following your example!) Thanks :)

  6. I enjoy reading your posts. You always speak from your heart and share what's in it with the rest of us. I'm glad to hear you found the right place!

  7. Writing from the heart feels right for me, Vickie, and this writing seems to be the way God is leading me. I'd say that I'm telling my truth in creative non-fiction form, If that can bless and encourage readers, as you are saying, Marnie, I will continue to write as I feel led. Another aspect about InScribe that is wonderful is the way we learn from each other. Blessings to all of you.

  8. AH the changes life brings. Enjoy it. My in-laws refuse to leave their farm and it's not pretty. There is something wonderful about people who can accept and adapt to change. Thank you for this testimony of encouragement to those also facing this season in life.

  9. We've stumbled along the way, but we are downsizing so we have less to look after. When my husband first mentioned doing this, I thought maybe we weren't ready for this at first, but I did buy into the program and I am happy that we did this. Even today, I am still rearranging a corner here and there and we need to do some finishing touches to our new place, and God isn't finished with us yet either.

  10. Sharon, these quote are so inspiring, I'm so glad you included them. So happy for the good things that came after the long struggles, too. I so appreciate you giving your perspectives on depression--it helps me (and I'm sure many others). God bless!


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