Look back on the way you've come so far.

Look around at the landscape of your life today.

Look ahead: God is still calling you forward.

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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. 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

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In a season of thanksgiving, it's natural to look around and take inventory: what do we have to be thankful for?

Sometimes it’s more than we can count. Other times – in times of struggle or scarcity or sickness – not so much. Sometimes the good gifts of our lives are outweighed by the troubles and traumas that surround us.

Sometimes the discoveries of lands of plenty turn out to be more dream than reality.

Sometimes we realize that we thought we'd arrived, when in fact we're still on the road.

The land of promise is still ahead of us. We will get there in God's presence, by God's guidance, in the fullness of God's time. We will get there together, walking in the ways of God and yearning for that place where all are fed and all are filled. And when we get there we will bless the Lord.

But we don't have to wait until then. We can bless the Lord now, here, dreaming together as we go.

Nikki Finkelstein-Blair

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Thank you, God, for traveling with me to the land you have promised, where all people will be welcomed and fed. Remind me – even during this season of celebration – that I have still not arrived at a final destination. I am glad to be with you on the way. Amen.

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Give thanks to God, who has come with you all this way.

Give thanks to God, whose presence surrounds you now.

Give thanks to God, who is already preparing you for the road ahead.

Nikki Finkelstein-Blair

Nikki Finkelstein-Blair is an ordained Baptist minister, military spouse, and mom of two boys. She weaves clergy stoles, knits sweaters, and this month she's writing a terrible first draft of a middle-grade novel for National Novel Writing Month. Next month she'll be sharing (hopefully not terrible) Advent prayers on her blog at

Be Thou My Vision

Mark Hayes

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