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Reflections on what to be thankful for this year

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 This blogger’s fortunes have been in downturn mode since this time in 2007. I’ll spare you the complete details, but suffice it to say up until then I was a business owner – Construction / Facilities Maintenance – the firm was driven into the ground by a large corporation’s bankruptcy. Prior to that, I was financially comfortable with a good income, four bedroom home in SoCal, vehicles, retirement fund & lots of vacation time.


After the Corporate BK Blowout, and coupled with the immediate downturn in 2008 and stress related & other health issues, I elected to get out of the business temporarily. I ditched my worldly goods and came to Colorado in late 2009 to regain my health and generally lay low. I intended to live off a bank account, some odd jobs using my skills and to pull funds from a managed retirement account if dire need arose. Unfortunately, bank accounts don’t go as far as they used to, and while dealing wit the demise of my firm, I neglected to monitor my Smith Barney account and got soaked in the stock market wipe-out. Boo-Friggin’-Hoo! Easy come easy go.


Fast forward to mid 2010 and the health move to “healthy” Colorado had the desired effect on the most critical issues. Blood pressure is down, the weight came off and the cholesterol normalized, gall stones backed off, daily exercise, etc., however, age, past injuries and many hard years in the construction trades caught up to me in the forms of severe osteoarthritis and disintegrating lumbar spine disks, all of which have basically disabled me from standing or walking, or even sitting for too long. So the odd jobs are out now. Now, after a two year battle with SSDI to recoup some of the $300 grand I paid into the SSI system has landed me in a position of disability and poverty. And that “Poverty” is the point of this tale.


Poverty is what I am thankful to God for. Poverty helped me free myself from Mass Media addiction (too poor for cable). Poverty helped me to have more free time to educate myself on many, many matters (via the internet) and to see more accurately the truths of my present day world. Poverty helped me in my walk with God, to realize that I am but a sojourner in this place. Poverty helped me become frugal and to realize that “stuff” or possessions means so very little to me. Poverty helped me become humble. The transformation is a wonder to me daily.


Poverty helped me to get ready for, to train for the coming worldwide economic “correction” that is about to engulf this country (we’ve lived beyond our means for too long). I am glad to have a couple years’ worth of head-start on learning to cope with a drastically reduced lifestyle. Had I not had the buffer zone to wean myself off of my former lifestyle, I fear the shock would have really been bad. This same shock is coming to many American families soon enough, and with no preparation time, nor buffer zone. I feel blessed. I could not even imagine having to enter these times with a wife & children.


The other thing I am thankful for is Pain. I know, I know, who in their right mind appreciates pain? It may be the “Right Mind” thing is an issue, but more than one respected source has said of pain; ”Pain builds character.” Pain also teaches patience, like Job, my pain annealed me to God.


So as I get ready make the traditional Thanksgiving Day Meal, nothing grand mind you, a Ham, a pie and some fixin’s and then to share it with any friends that show up, I’ll do it with a peace of mind & spirit that I only hope other Americans will find this Thanksgiving Day. I also am very thankful for the few real friends I have in life and for my brother, Maxwell, all four of them have helped me immensely in my time of need. Praise and thank the Lord! I am very thankful for the bounty in my life.


Happy Thanksgiving,


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