Heart Choices: Thankful Thursday ~ Looking Back -->

Theme Layout

Boxed or Wide or Framed

Theme Translation

Display Featured Slider

Featured Slider Styles

Display Grid Slider

Grid Slider Styles

Display Trending Posts

Display Author Bio

Display Instagram Footer

Dark or Light Style

Thankful Thursday ~ Looking Back

Happy New Year! I'm so glad that Thankful Thursday landed on New Year's Day 2009. The theme for this thankful Thursday is "looking back".

As I reflect on 2008, I want to be sure I learn the lessons I need to learn so I can move forward in confidence and hope ...by faith.

2008 was a difficult and challenging year for me. I think the emotion I struggled with the most was fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of failure, fear of loss.

So here's my thankful list as I look back to 2008:
  • I'm God's child and He has and will continue to help me. Isaiah 41:10 "So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." So, even though I don't always see the road ahead, I can be thankful that He is teaching me to trust Him and then ...I don't need to fear.
  • The blogging world has become such a blessing to me. In 2008, I became more consistent and focused on writing blog posts. And I discovered that I really enjoy writing! I've received encouragement from so many sources; people I've never met face to face ...yet! I'm so thankful for people taking the time to comment, to offer words of encouragement and advice and sometimes words to ponder, learn and to grow.
  • Help often came from unexpected places. In 2008, I guess I was a bit surprised by people and events that were such a help to me. My family, my group of 12, my closest friends, my church family and my new blogging friends! My friend Karen shared something from her heart with me about fear. One of her sons died several years ago and then when she had another son in Iraq, fear would come upon her. She pointed me to the Bible and a chapter in II Chronicles 20. Karen even paraphrased what she heard God saying to her personally through these verses and suggested I do likewise. It's good to be reminded of who God is and that He's in control. And I'm not to fear but instead to remember what He's done in the past. I am so thankful for such wonderful and timely wisdom from a godly friend!
  • Friends can be such a joy; old and new. I had the opportunity to attend a reunion of high school friends in 2008. It wasn't any special year like a 20 year or dare I say 40 year reunion (at least not yet). But it was fun to reconnect with people I hadn't seen in so many years. I found that I reverted back to being that sometimes awkward 18 year old even though the exterior doesn't quite look that same way. We had such fun remembering where we came from; Lindenhurst, New York ... a village on Long Island.
  • Renewal and refreshment from attending Women of Faith Conference: I am so thankful that Helen purchased my ticket to this conference. It was such a fun time, a learning time and a time to get away from everyday life. Listening to speakers like Luci Swindoll, Shelia Walsh, and Patsy Clairmont. Hearing the music of Sandy Patti, Mandisa and rocking out with Nicole C. Mullen. How great is that?

So, although my thankful list for 2008 is no way complete, this is a beginning. As 2009 is now upon us, will you take a moment to reflect on what you can be thankful for this past year?

You can read other thankful Thursday posts at Grace Alone.

Debbie Petras
Share This Post :

You Might Also Like


  1. Debbie,

    I have gleaned so much from you these past months being your bloggy friend.

    I am thankful for you and your tender heart towards the things of the Lord.

    I pray God's richest blessings upon you in 2009. I look forward to your posts and sharing pieces of your life.

    Thank you for your kind words for my daughter and thank you so much for your prayer support. That means so much to me.

    Hugs to you, my friend.

  2. Debbie, I'm glad to have you as a bloggy friend. I hope you see God's many blessings in 2009.

  3. Debbie,

    Happy New Year!

    It has been such a joy getting to know you this year!

    I'm so thankful that God has crossed our paths!

    I look forward to all that God has in store for us this year!

    Much love and blessings,

  4. I like reading what you post on Thursdays. It's a blessing to read your joy. It's good for my soul.

    Thank you,

  5. Wonderful thankful list of God's blessings...even, in the unknown and in trusting Him.

    God is faithful and He is so good.

    Happy New Year and Happy TT!

  6. Hi Debbie,
    I enjoyed reading this post (and also Laurel's that you recommended!). You truly write from the heart. and it really shows that you have a passion for writing! I look forward to reading more in 2009.
    Best wishes for a Happy New Year.

  7. May you be abundantly blessed in 2009.

  8. a thankful heart - that is a wonderful way to view the world ... past and present ...

    hope 2009 brings unexpected blessings on your way!

  9. I am praising God he has crossed our paths. You have been such a blessing to me. Happy New Years my friend.

    Thank you so much for posting my New Years Meditation button, you are such a sweetie.


  10. Debra,

    I'm so glad that I've met you through blogging in 2008. Yes, this year presented its challenges just like every other year, but I realize that these are growth periods for me!!

    Thank you for being you, and I hope to get to know more of you in this coming year!!


  11. I love reflecting on the past year and seeing all the ways God blessed me and spoke to me. But I have to wait until Monday to do that, because I still have a houseful of kiddos running around. Monday, they'll go back to school, which is much more conducive to "reflection."

    I, too, am very thankful for the blogging community I've discovered this year. I had no idea it even existed last year at this time!

    You've been a huge part of that, and such an encouragement to me lately...thanks so much for extending your hand of friendship.

    And in answer to your question you posted on my blog...I would be extremely humbled and honored if you allowed Fitness Fridays to be part of Heart Choices. :)

    Blessings this New Year, Sweet Friend!


  12. Debbie,
    Your blogs are always so beauti=
    fully expressed. Watching you grow and expand is such a blessing to me; I am so priviledged to be on this journey with you. And even though the journey is difficult right now, God is still using you in a powerful way to touch the lives of many. Thankful am I to be one. Love you. h.

  13. Dear Debbie,
    Wisely reflected, well spoken.
    I started blogging with the intention to write about all the things I felt wrong and not to my liking.
    Not willingly I was led to paths where I had to count my blessings, and suddenly found myself rich.

    My grandmother's slogan was,"It's not important how you are, but how you are coping with how you are."

    I am truly grateful for finding your heartblog and the way you are combining the issues of body, spirit and soul.
    Think I have picked up a trick or two, and also been inspired think think new.

    A Norwegian greeting:
    Happy New Year and thank you for the old one.
    Godt nytt aar og takk for det gamle.

    From Felisol


I love to read your comments! I know you have something to share so join in the conversation. And thank you for taking the time.

[name=DEBBIE PETRAS] [img=http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-2CDrwq9-7eo/WV6tdbP-QgI/AAAAAAACfb0/ViqQSnSVaDsMLXyz3AEEzZ5-78luBHOGgCK4BGAYYCw/s1600/Debbie%2BFace%2Bblog.JPG] [description=]