Count your blessings, name them one by one


I have just finished reading "Mighty be our power" by Leymah Ghowee, 2011 Nobel Peace price winner. Leymah is Liberian and at the tender aged of  17 war came to Liberia and changed her life forever. She witness death, her family ripped apart with many dying or becoming refugees in neighbouring countries, destruction of her city and the loss of everything she held dear. To add to her misery, she found herself in an abusive relationship that caused her much grief. Her life was turned upside down leading her along a path of hopelessness, fear and despair. But in her darkest moments she remembered this hymn which reminded her to "count her blessings". Can you imagine being in a war zone or being beaten up by your husband and still wanting to count your blessings?  Our lives are so comfortable, we forget to count our blessings when they are starring us in the face. I sometimes think it takes loosing some or all of our comforts to realise what God really does for us. 


When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.
Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, every doubt will fly,
And you will keep singing as the days go by.
When you look at others with their lands and gold,
Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold;
Count your many blessings. Wealth can never buy
Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high.

So, amid the conflict whether great or small,
Do not be disheartened, God is over all;
Count your many blessings, angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.

I just love that last verse, no matter the conflict - great or small, "never be disheartened, God is over all". Don't live in fear of what is happening in this world (and in some areas it is just horrifying), do not panic about the week ahead, leave your children in God's hands - as God has it all under control.  What amazing comfort to know His love and His grace. 

And what an amazing woman Leymah is, to realise that through pray and peaceful protest the women of Liberia could end the fourteen year old civil war. She lead a group of brave women and overturned Charles Taylor and led her nation to peace. But most importantly she found comfort in the Word of God during her darkest moments and prayed to the Lord for guidance and strength in bringing peace.  

If you were wondering why a group of women rose up to end the war (rather than remaining in their homes caring for their children), because it is the women who suffer most during war. In Liberia, 250,000 people died, a quarter were children. One in three were displaced, 350,000 lived in camps. One million people, mostly women and children were at risk of malnutrition, diarrhoea, measles and cholera. These women, many mothers, grandmothers, aunts, sisters decided it was time to put an end to rape, murder, widowhood. 

Most women are not called to do something as monumental as Leymah, our lives are so much simpler but we still forget to count our blessings, how sad. So, this week, lets focus on counting our blessings, perhaps list them so you can look back at how blessed you truly are. 


I have come to one conclusion: All that I am, all that I aspire to be, all that I was before, is by the grace of God. There are so many women in Africa, and outside Africa, who are more intelligent than I am. 

(Leymah Ghowee)
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Comments

  1. An amazing account, you are so right we do forget to count our blessings, your post today certainly made me think what a privileged life that I have. Have a good week.

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  2. Hello Jo, I always have tried to remind myself and my family to remember to count our blessings. It is amazing that God allowed this woman to be used in this way for His glory. God has all of us right where he wants us!
    Just read your last few posts! Hope you are doing well!
    Blessings, Roxy

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for stopping by, lovely to hear from you. You are so right, God has each of us in the right place I right with us.

      Have a lovely week ahead. Blessings.

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  3. SO many blessings! And how important it is to remember them. The Lord can use us however He sees fit if we allow ourselves to be vessels for Him. Sometimes He uses people for the little things, sometimes for the big things. Either way, we're all important to Him and He is able to bless each of us wherever we are.
    Thank you for the reminder. x

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    Replies
    1. We are all very important to Him, which at times is hard to understand when one is so insignificant in this world.

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  4. Jo, thank you for this story; I am forwarding it to a dear friend of mine who has adopted 5 children from Liberia. I know they will be interested, too (if they haven't already heard of her).

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    1. This story is interesting as she was such a flawed person, certainly not a perfect Christian in any way, but she appear to keep her faith throughout which gave her the strength do she needed.

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  5. I just adore that song, and you can often here me singing it as I go about my chores. It helps me to remember how many blessings I really do have, and also remember those who aren't so lucky.

    x

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    Replies
    1. More of us should be singing these words :)) what a difference it would make. Have a wonderful week ahead.

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  6. So important for us to remember (and thank God) for the blessings we have been given.
    It's too easy to look for the negatives and yet being grateful for the good things helps us tremendously.
    And..... I often think that in a first world country we truly have no idea what it really means to 'suffer'!

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    Replies
    1. We have so many first world problems that are just silly!!!! but they worry us no end. When I think of the struggles of Liberia - both with the wars they have suffered and now Ebola, they certainly now how tough life can be and what is important and what isn't. We have no idea what suffering is.

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