Tag Archives: Gratitude

When you possess this, miracles are in the making.

14 Mar

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

Reblogged March 14, 2020

March 13, 2020

My ten-year-old grandson got up from the dinner table, walked over to me and tapped my shoulder. “Nana, thank you. I love the noodles you made. But next time can you put a little less salt. I’ll still eat them, but I’m just telling you for next time, okay?”

I gave him a tight hug. So sorry,” I said, “it’s not what you expected.”

His heart of gratitude touched me. He could’ve complained and refuse to eat it, but he chose to thank me anyway and eat salty noodles.

That night I put my head on the pillow of shame. Unlike my grandson, if I didn’t receive from God what I expected, or not in my own timing, disappointment set in. And a sense of discouragement took the place of contentment.

Sadly, that discontentment is popular today. We have expectations and wait for God to serve the answer in the way we anticipate. And when that doesn’t happen, we wonder why. We question our faith. And our once complete trust in God isn’t complete anymore.

But God sees the full picture, including our sense of disappointment. What He’s looking for our gratitude for even little things. He’s expecting praises in everything. And He’s more direct in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-17 when He says, “Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

Give thanks in all circumstances? Even when we’re still in the same sorry situation, with no change for the better or with no solution either? God says Yes. Consider if these prominent folks in the Bible displayed discontentment.

What if…

What if Abraham became disappointed when God asked him to sacrifice his son. He would have missed his calling to be the father of many nations.

What if Moses allowed his weakness to diminish his trust in God? He would have missed his role to be the instrument to set the Israelites free.

What if David focused only on the punishment for his sin and failed to praise God for His forgiveness and redemptive love? He would have remained a poor-me-sinner relegated to obscurity.

And what if Noah would have succumbed to the ridicule of the people and stopped the building of the ark? He and his family would have also drowned.

What if fear and disappointment would have filled Paul during the episodes where he was beaten, tossed out and imprisoned? He would not have seen the world around him turn to Jesus.

You and I are no different. God sometimes gives direction for our journey but doesn’t reveal the reason for each stop. At times, God provides only small amounts of success to test our character. And sometimes, God brings about an answer contrary to what we asked to test our trust in Him.

No matter how many plates of salty noodles the world serves you, the test is on. Will you praise Him for what God has done? Will you thank Him for what He’s doing? And will you be bold enough to praise Him for what you know He will do?

If the answer is yes, then you’ll find how miracles come wrapped in gratitude.

Let’s Pray

Father, I thank you for your patience when I fail to trust in You completely. I praise You for forgiving me when I fail to thank You through all the stages of my journey. In Jesus’ name.

What miracles will your gratitude bring?



Did you know I wrote a book filled with words of encouragement, uplifting thoughts and illustrations of real-life triumph to empower you? Its title, Trials of Today, Treasures for Tomorrow: Overcoming Adversities in Life. You can get it HERE.

CLICK HERE for a one-minute inspirational video.

Looking for a speaker for your upcoming event? A great speaker makes the difference between a so-so event and one that shines with impact. I invite you to view one of my two-minute videos HERE.

Please share: Feel free to share Janet’s posts with your friends.

Janet Eckles Perez

Some say she should be the last person to be dancing. Her life is summarized in this 3-minute video: http://bit.ly/1a8wGJR

Janet Perez Eckles’ story of triumph is marked by her work as an international speaker, #1 best-selling author, radio host, personal success coach and master interpreter. Although blind since 31, her passion is to help you see the best of life.


The secret to overcoming self-pity.

26 Jan

Walking by Faith, Not by SIght

Janet Perez Eckles

The secret to overcoming self-pity.


Reblogged January 26, 2019

It’s no good to share secrets. But sometimes, it’s fun to create them like when my 5-year-old granddaughter and I had a secret.

Give me a G

In the midst of playing or eating a meal, and without any prompting, I’d turn to her and say, “Honey, give me a G.”

She knew that secret code. She stopped what she was doing, and thought, trying to find something for which she was grateful (the ‘G’ stands for grateful).

Her young mind swirled around to find something good. Something pleasant. Something fun or even mundane but worth appreciating.

Who knows, but learning this at five years of age, the secret of gratitude to erase gloom will keep her out of the poor me club.

How about you?

Maybe this is a not-so-good day for you today. And that’s why God is trying to get your attention and asking you to give Him a ‘G’. That’s the real secret—in the midst of the garbage of life, look, really look for the gem of gratitude.

When I first lost my sight, I found hope when I dug up that gem in the pile of discouragement. That has been my secret from then on. Always looking for that something for which to say Thank you, God. Always searching for that worthwhile thing that sparks gratitude. Always digging deep for that something to appreciate and value.

And when everything falls apart. When life couldn’t get any darker. When issues become too huge to solve, gratitude shines when our soul repeats: “Where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth” (Psalm 121:1-2).

Let’s Pray

Father, confessing the sadness that clouded my days, finding something to be grateful for had been elusive and futile. But knowing my help comes from you, my hope is in you, and my healing and answers are in your hands, gratitude will always fill my heart. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Can you list ten things you’re grateful for?



Did you know I wrote a book filled with words of encouragement, uplifting thoughts and illustrations of real-life triumph to empower you? Its title, Trials of Today, Treasures for Tomorrow: Overcoming Adversities in Life. You can get it HERE.

CLICK HERE for a one-minute inspirational video.

Looking for a speaker for your upcoming event? A great speaker makes the difference between a so-so event and one that shines with impact. I invite you to view one of my two-minute videos HERE.

Please share: Feel free to share Janet’s posts with your friends.


Source: https://janetperezeckles.com/blog/gratitide/the-secret-to-overcoming-self-pity.html


Janet Eckles Perez

Some say she should be the last person to be dancing. Her life is summarized in this 3-minute video: http://bit.ly/1a8wGJR

Janet Perez Eckles’ story of triumph is marked by her work as an international speaker, #1 best-selling author, radio host, personal success coach and master interpreter. Although blind since 31, her passion is to help you see the best of life.


Best Thanksgiving Dinner Recipe

18 Nov

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles





My friend stopped by the other day. We sat at the kitchen table and chatted. She rumbled in her purse. “You have to see the pictures I took during our trip,” she said.

I smiled.

“Oops,” she added, “I always forget you…well…that you can’t see.”

“I forget myself,” I said with a chuckle. (I like folks with a sense of humor.)

For me, having no sight is a way of life…actually a wonderfully blessed life. My days sweep by with gratitude, so much thankfulness that I can hear, walk, talk, and love. I am truly rich with so much.

And for that reason, I thought I’d share my unique recipe for this Thanksgiving dinner. I don’t mind if you copy it and serve it to your loved ones.

  1. Gather the ingredients stored in the cabinet of God’s Word.
  2. Stir together large portions of His promises, spoonfuls of His direction, and dashes of His admonitions.
  3. Place in a large bowl several cups of commitment to read His Word.
  4. Add generous amounts of faith to cover all traces of doubt.
  5. Blend together, adding sprinkles of laughter, of enjoyment, fun, and unexpected surprises.
  6. Bake in the oven of your heart till triumph is golden brown.

With songs of thanksgiving playing in the background, present it to the guests who come into your life. And unlike the rest of the world, instead of entering the doors to stress, gloom or anxiety for the days to come, “Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name” (Psalm 100:4).

Why? “For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations” (Psalm 100:5).

It’s your turn, can you share some things you’ll be giving thanks for this year? Would love, love to read them. You can send them to me via comment.

Did you know most of my writings are drawn from my bestselling book, Simply Salsa: Dancing Without Fear at God’s Fiesta? Did you get your own copy yet? And how about one for that person who needs encouragement and a reason to feel joy again?

Simply Salsa is available HERE.


Video sneak peek:  https://youtu.be/Ox9zAIeRRTA

Source: http://www.janetperezeckles.com/blog/best-thanksgiving-dinner-recipe.html#comment-961




My Thanksgiving Letter

24 Nov

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis

 I am writing this as a letter because, I think of our readers as friends. You come and let us share our lives with you and share yours in return. That is what friends do. I am beyond thankful for the friends who faithfully blog here each week, DiVoran, Bill, Louise, Judy, Melody and Janet. They inspire me with their commitment and wisdom. I love you guys!

Dear friends,

It is funny how circumstances change our thankful list. Usually on Thanksgiving our  list is for family, health ,friends, and of course, our Savior.  This year, we woke up to wet grass and the wonderful rain is at the top of our list.

Our beautiful North Carolina, Georgia and Tennessee mountains that are part of the forest service lands, have been viciously attacked by arsonist and thousands of acres  are affected.  I pray it was enough to give our firefighters and those from across the country who came to help, a rest this Thanksgiving day.

This morning, I pulled out old favorites as well as new cookbooks to get our meal started. One of my “must have” books is an old one from Ebenezer United Methodist Church in Raleigh, NC. It has been a part of our Thanksgiving meal for years. They have put out newer ones, but I love the old version. This year, I have added a new favorite, Janet’s Appalachian Cookbooks. Rebekah mixed up the School House Rolls recipe and I can’t wait to sink my teeth in their yeasty goodness. Of course, I had to go to the internet to find a recipe so we have a beautiful blending of old with new. Our turkey is in the roaster and the oven is almost ready for the side dishes. It has been a joy working side by side in the kitchen with my daughter. We each have our quirks when it comes to cooking and how we do things, but we can laugh about them and it adds to the fun.

I won’t pretend that my heart does not have a tender spot, missing the large family meals with my parents, brothers and their families. We don’t have any children’s voices laughing and arguing or the camaraderie of a bunch of women in the kitchen. I miss it but I am so blessed to have had that time. I hope wherever you gathered today, that you treasured the moments and you loved richly.

Talk to you later, the oven is ready!




UPDATE: One of our favorite places in Macon county is Wayah Bald, with it’s rustic fire tower and breathtaking views. It is also a favorite rest stop for hikers on the   Appalachian Trail. I read on Facebook tonight that one of the forest fires burned the tower. I can’t conceive of the anger a heart must hold to destroy so much beauty. I fear the damage to the stone structure might be too damaged to repair. I am thankful for the memories we made there and hopeful it will be restored.

My Internet is Evil

1 Sep

On the Porch

Onisha Ellis

I probably shouldn’t use the word evil to describe my internet, but the level of frustration it provokes in me leads to dreams of random acts of revenge.  It isn’t the internet itself that is evil, it’s my internet provider. It has no respect or concerns for my needs. Whether I am in the middle of booking a reservation or snagging a sudden opening  on a promotional site, it does not care. It will drop me faster than an egg in an egg and spoon race and as often.

Egg and Spoon Race


After a particularly dreadful bout of internet failure, I appealed to the provider on Facebook. Their social media team expressed dismay and distress for my predicament and sent a request to their escalation team asking them  to call me. They did call. I missed it but they did leave a message. It seems I live in a high usage area . No consolation of an impending improvement. Basically too bad, so sad.

Now you might be thinking, why doesn’t the woman change providers?  I would love to. BUT we have DSL and it seems that all of the internet in the area runs over the same system. No matter who we pay, the service will be the same. Now that I have grumbled and groused, I need to say that I am grateful and blessed to have internet service, Many families in rural areas have no DSL or broadband internet.

Another thing I am grateful for is my husband’s improving health after two years of decline. This summer he has completed multiple projects and is almost finished with his current one, replacing our entryway stairs.


I am working on grousing less and giving thanks more, but my internet service is really testing me!



25 Sep

From the Heart

Louise Gibson

Louise Gibson

I have learned to enjoy the little things-
there are so many of them.

I thank God for His blessings-
waking up each morning is one.
There is so much promise in the air,
So many victories to be won.

It is all age-related.
What is your expectancy?
To pass all the “tests” of the day-
Whatever they may be?

We all face challenges
that tax our existence-
but one must persevere
in spite of their persistence.

Hold on to your values-
Stand up for what you believe.
If God is at the forefront,
He will help you to achieve.

“Enjoy the little things,
for one day you may look back
and realize they were the big things.”
Robert Brauilt

I first posted these thoughts on 8/31/2013
and I still feel they are relevant to today.
Louise Gibson

Feather JPG

Painting by DiVoran Lites

So, Why Should I Be Thankful?

17 Oct

From My Heart

Louise Gibson

Louise Gibson

A thankful heart causes us to look upward.

It causes us to look around,

and causes us to look within

where the peace of God is found.


The number one secret to happiness

is a grateful heart.

Beginning our day with a prayer of gratitude

brings tranquility from the start.


Fear is the father of failure-

a negative emotion, to be sure.

Replace it with a positive thought-

Failure you will no longer endure.





When we choose not to focus on what is missing

from our lives, but are grateful for the abundance

that is present-  we experience heaven on earth.


Something to Live By

6 Jul


Judy Wills



Recently, we met a friend at a famous barbeque eatery. It has become one of our favorite places to eat. Unfortunately, it takes us about 45 minutes to get there from our house, so we don’t go there very often. It is a favorite of the locals, and you must get there just as they open the doors, or you wait in a long line outside!

It’s a fairly rustic place, with just a few booths, but mostly picnic-type tables with benches. Some of the seating is outside, but under cover. But the food is really worth the wait, and definitely the place to go if you like BBQ.

While we were eating and visiting with each other, I noticed a plaque on the wall. There are a LOT of plaques on the wall, and other rustic decorations, but this one really caught my eye. It goes like this:

smilr copy

Isn’t that neat? There really isn’t anything “Christian” about it, but I think it says a lot about life perspective. I think it would help keep us in the right frame of mind to be upbeat and positive about how we live each day. Nothing droopy about anything on that list.

So………S M I L E and give thanks – for everything!

God is good.







The Secret to Happiness

4 Apr

From My Heart

Louise Gibson

author of Window Wonders;


We all harbor secrets
(facts set apart)
But I am compelled to share my secret –
It is a grateful heart.

Life presents many challenges –
We agree that this is true.
From birth to the grave circumstances change
And so does our point of view.

I am family oriented.
It was so important to me.
To raise and nurture children with love –
Became my top priority.

It took the death of my first born son
To draw my eyes to the cross.
The Lord didn’t do it to be mean –
Rather, He put meaning to my loss.

God didn’t ask us to understand him.
He only said, “trust and obey.”
I am so grateful for His promises.
He is “the truth, the light, the way.”

“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you” says the Lord.
“Thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a Future and a Hope.”

Jeremiah 29:11 World English Bible

Heaping Coals of Fire

30 Dec

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Author, Poet and ArtistAs I write, my soup heats on the stove. A banner blows from the porch over bright red poinsettias in sunshine. A shiny whirly-gig spins on the back fence. Red tallow tree leaves flutter in the breeze. I’ve had two days of being down with a cold, but today I’m feeling myself again and everything looks better and brighter.

I just had a rest listening to Dino’s incredible piano hymns on my new Pandora radio station coming from Bill’s iPhone. The cat lay on my chest purring the whole time.

Before that Bill and I cleaned house so it would be fur-free when, tomorrow, one of our grown children’s friends brings his family for a rare visit. They live in the Atlanta area and we live in Florida, so we don’t see them often, but we do talk on the phone.

Bill vacuumed and I dusted. It was cool on the porch, but not too cold to water the plants and run a dust rag over the shelf where we keep them. Oh, yes, some hot-pink Christmas cactus is in bloom there, too. I filled the birdbath and the painted buntings came to bathe, to drink, and to eat the seed Bill put out for them.

As I was lying down to rest, just before the cat got comfortable, while the music was playing softly, Bill brought in a vintage book he’s reading: Strange Scriptures. It was written by a missionary by the name of Barbara M. Bowen who lived in Palestine and published her book with Wm. B. Eerdman in 1945. It explains many of the things we read in the Bible by telling how the people of Bible lands have lived since the days of Abraham.

He read about coals of fire, Romans 12:20. Mrs. Bowen explained that where she and her husband lived people kept a brazier of fire going in their homes at all times. If the coals went out they sent someone to a neighbor’s house for fresh ones. If the neighbor was loving and generous she filled the container for the coals full and it was carried on the head back to the fireless home. Paul said that if we give our enemies food and drink, we are heaping coals of fire on their heads. In that day and time it meant to forgive fully and generously. Such love and forgiveness can only be experienced through the Spirit of God and those who love and trust Him.

It had been one year since Bill’s heart attack. As he read to me, he had his ball cap on, ready to run an errand. My bed was the right mix of firm and soft. The house was neither too warm nor too cold. Our work was done, our house was clean. The radio played softly, “It is Well with My Soul,” and it truly was well with our souls. Sometimes such moments arrive and we treasure them fleetingly. I wanted to share this one with you and wish you a New Year full of them.

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