What Am I Grateful for Today… Grocery Stores

Keep the commandments of the Lord your God by walking in his ways and by fearing him,because the Lord your God is bringing you to a wonderful land, a land with streams of water, springs, and wells that gush up in the valleys and on the hills; a land of wheat and barley, vines, fig trees, and pomegranates; a land of olive oil and honey; a land where you will eat food without any shortage—you won’t lack a thing there—a land where stone is hard as iron and where you will mine copper from the hills.10 You will eat, you will be satisfied, and you will bless the Lord your God in the wonderful land that he’s given you (Deuteronomy 8:6-10, Common English Bible).

Make no mistake about it. I am not a farmer. I am not a gardener. I love fresh, homegrown produce. Tomatoes are my favorite. There is nothing quite like a fresh tomato picked from the vine and eating it when it is perfectly ripe. The flavors are wonderful, if of course, you are like me and you like tomatoes.

If you are like my wife and dislike tomatoes you would probably be a fan of my farming abilities. I have attempted, several times, to grow a few different kinds of vegetables. I have particularly tried to grow tomatoes. My plants grow tall. My plants get blooms. My plants do not get tomatoes. And, what is true for tomatoes is equally true for pretty much any kind of produce.

I am pretty happy that I live in an era where I don’t have to grow my own food. Even as recent as 100 years ago, there was a pretty good chance that I would have grown much of my own food. Even if I worked in another field, I would have grown some of my own food.

When I read passages, Moses, or whoever wrote Deuteronomy makes the Promised Land sound like the Israelites would just be able to walk outside and pick their choice of produce from what farmers of a generation or two ago called “volunteer” plants. Of course it wasn’t like that at all. Even with the most fertile ground, one must still plant seeds, tend plants and harvest crops to have food at the end.

Oh no! That would mean I would have been in big trouble since I can’t get my plants to produce a crop. I am in big trouble. I might starve.

If you look at me you would know there is little chance of me starving soon. Still, I would probably be a great deal more limited in what I could eat.

It makes me grateful for grocery stores. Can you imagine what that might look like to the Israelites of our lesson today? They might think this is the Promised Land. And, because the United States can raise so much produce, we literally feed the world. Well, we help feed the world.

When my father was growing up in the 1930’s and 1940’s, his family ate because the grew food. Throughout my life, when my family has needed food, it has been a matter of getting into the car and driving to the grocery store, buying what we needed, then returning home to put the groceries away.

So, because I can work in a career I enjoy and where I have talents, I don’t have to try to scratch out a living working the land, where I clearly do not have talents, I am grateful for grocery stores. Walking into the produce department alone reminds me to be grateful I can shop at a place that has all the produce I would ever need.

It may not taste quite as good as home grown, but it beats eating air by many measures and I am grateful.

Grocery stores are what I am grateful for today. What about you? What are you grateful for today. Write it in your journal and then share it with someone you know, or someone you don’t.

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

With Joy and Thankfulness,

Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

Published by drjkbroyles

I love Mike Ashcraft's book, "My One Word." For the past nine years I have participated and encouraged others to participate to in the "My One Word" Challenge. My first word was discipline was my word the first year. Since then my word has been focus, sight, jungle, peace, concentration, serve, genuine and this year is fit. I seek to be fit for my health, my family, my church, my ministries. I seek to be fit in any are of my life where God might point to me. I also have a nickname, "Dr. B." When I was a public high school teacher, Dr. B. is what most of my students called me, at least in my presence. I am still called that by many people though I no longer teach in public schools. I am the author of "Average Joe: With an Extraordinary Story" (available on Amazon). The book fits into the genre of "Biblical Fiction" or "Christian Fiction" and features some of the Bible's lesser known characters. The name of my blog is, "Fork in the Road." Life is filled with forks in the road. It isn't a matter of if we encounter a fork in the road, but when will we and how many will we experience in a lifetime. I love to strum my guitar. I am not a great guitar player but I enjoy it. I also enjoy writing music. I get excited with I feel a new song emerging. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog, "Bishop" in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 30 years as a United Methodist pastor, serving churches all over east and southeast Texas, from just north of Tyler to south of Houston, from the Gulf Coast to east of Madisonville. I currently serve Perritte Memorial UMC in Nacogdoches. I spent one year in the classroom, teaching High School government, economics, psychology, and sociology. Cindy and I have been married for 43 years. We have two grown sons and six grandchildren, three boys and three girls. I enjoy preaching and all it's aspects from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading. I have dabble in drawing and "painting" with pastels as well as woodworking and woodcarving. My current projects are two ukuleles. I collect, repair and restore guitars too. I play the guitar (badly, but I still do) I also enjoy working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, TX, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. This blog started out as devotional writings. In August of 2020, I made a major change to the blog, switching to a daily theme format. Sunday Sermon-usually my manuscript sermon Miscellaneous Monday-misc. writing, poetry, ministry Tuesday Thoughts-Devotion Wed. with Wesleys-hist. & theol. of early Methodists TED Talk Thursday-Video & appl. in current theology Five for Friday-5 things I've seen & my thoughts Sing-Along Sat. - Usually a new song I have written I write, "Strumming a G-Chord with Dr.B." to get my thoughts onto something permanent. After all, they say, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. Seeking the Genuine, Keith Lufkin, Texas August 2020

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