************ Chapel Talk on Psalm 136 ************

By: Rev. Adrian Dieleman

This chapel talk was given on November 23, 2005

Psalm 136 - done responsively

"90 Minutes - 90 Blessings"

CVC Thanksgiving Chapel


      Does His love really endure forever? And, do we really believe it? Or, is it just a phrase we say without meaning it?


      To help you see God's love I want you to count your blessings. I want to tell you in this Thanksgiving Chapel that I tried to count my blessings this past week and I lost count.


      The title of my talk this morning is "90 Minutes - 90 Blessings." I want to take you through the first 90 minutes of my day. And, I want the kids in first and second grade to count the blessings out loud. GET FIRST AND SECOND GRADE TO COUNT ...


1.   I wake up. I could have died during the night. But God has given me another day to praise Him and live for Him.

2.   I wake up in bed. A comfortable bed. With a Serta mattress and a headboard and some kind of posts on the corner.

3.   I stretch. My toes still wiggle. My arms still flex.

4.   I open my eyes. I can still see and I only need glasses for reading.

5.   I pray. "Be with me today, Lord. Help me get my work done. Bless my wife and my sons." What a blessing – to talk to God in prayer.

6.   I sit up and swing my legs out of bed. I feel carpet under my feet. Not dirt. Not cold cement.

7.   The digital clock says 5:55 AM. My day is only 30 seconds old and I already have encountered 7 blessings.

8.   I feel my bladder. I don't need diapers. I don't need dialysis.

9.   I don't have to use a hole in the ground – like I experienced in Asia. In my bathroom is a nice, white, porcelain toilet.

10. I fill the sink with hot water. I have a choice of hot or cold or somewhere in between. I wash the sleepers out of my eyes.

11. I grab a soft, fluffy towel. No rag. No paper towel.

12. I take out the shaving cream. I don't use soap like I had to use in Asia.

13. I also take out a new razor blade. I don't have to use the straight edge my dad used when I was a kid. Mine is a Gillette with 3 blades for an extra comfortable and smooth shave. Just like the ad says, I make my face nice and smooth and whisker free without a single cut.

14. I brush my teeth. I still have all my teeth.

15. I use a toothbrush. Mine is a sonic-care with battery power.

16. I also use toothpaste. My breath is winter-fresh and sweet smelling.

17. I put on shorts for exercising. I have at least 4 pairs to choose from.

18. I pull on a t-shirt. I can't count the number of t-shirts in my drawer.

19. I put on running shoes. Nikes. On sale at Costco.

20. I stretch. I am still able to reach my toes.

21. I turn on the TV.

22. There is bad news about riots in France and deaths in Iraq. But I am safe and sound in Visalia.

23. I have DirecTV. Isn't it amazing that I can pluck a signal from outer space and display it on my TV?

24. Because of TiVo I can record any program and play it without having to watch the commercials.

25. I quick turn on the computer.

26. It has a flat panel monitor.

27. I also have a high-speed internet connection.

28. It is on a roll-top desk.

29. I start my exercises. Pull ups. Sit ups. Row on the rowing machine. Push ups. Followed by a run. I've been up for an one hour and ten minutes. My body and body parts still work. I wonder how many blessings I have overlooked.

30. As I run I see the sunrise. Gorgeous.

31. I also see the mountains – so majestic.

32. I pick up the newspaper on the way into the house.

33. I can read – the paper and my bible.

34. I am sweaty and hot. Now is a good time to hug and kiss my wife. She wrinkles her nose at me and says I smell. But she loves me anyway.

35. A shower. With hot water.

36. Soap.

37. Shampoo.

38. I use a big fluffy towel to dry myself.

39. I don't have to put on makeup.

40. I don't have to waste time combing my hair. You know what the Bible says – some heads are made beautiful and the rest come covered with hair.

41. I get dressed. I am able to dress myself. Unless my wife doesn't like what I put together.

42. My dresser is filled with choices: Socks.

43. Underwear.

44. Shirts.

45. Pants.

46. Shoes.

47. Breakfast time. I open the pantry. Do I want cereal? Three or four different kinds. Or oatmeal. Or Cream of Wheat.

48. I look in the freezer. English muffins. Bagels. Some kind of breakfast sandwich meant for my son and not for me but sometimes I sneak one anyway.

49. The bread box has white and brown bread.

50. The refrigerator has juice, milk, bacon, ham slices, cheese, eggs.

51. I decide on Cream of Wheat. I measure out 1 cup of milk.

52. 3 tablespoons of the mix.

53. A dash of salt.

54. I pour it all into a mixing bowl.

55. Into the microwave it goes.

56. My wife glares at me. So I quick grab a paper towel and put in on top. She smiles. After 30 years of marriage I am finally catching on.

57. The microwave bell rings. I open the dish cupboard and pull out a bowl.

58. I grab a spoon.

59. I put a dab of butter on the top.

60. I find the golden corn syrup I grew up with and pour it on top.

61. My wife asks me if I want to add a dash of cinnamon.

62. The cream of wheat warms me all the way down.

63. I brush my teeth again.

64. I grab my wallet. It has cash.

65. And credit cards.

66. I pass through the laundry room. My wifey kisses me as she loads the washer with clothes.

67. She pours in the detergent.

68. A couple of spots on my pants need to be pre-treated.

69. A sheet gets thrown into the dryer to make everything smell good and come out wrinkle free.

70. I shut the door on the security panel.

71. I go into the garage filled with stuff:

72. Chevrolet Trail Blazer.

73. Honda Civic.

74. Chevy 2500 pickup.

75. Upright Freezer filled with meat and stuff.

76. Lawn Mower.

77. Edger.

78. Leaf blower.

79. Roto-Tiller.

80. Power Washer.

81. Power Tools.

82. Ladders.

83. My bike. I wonder if I will get time for a bike ride today.

84. Garage door opener – which I press.

85. I back out the car and wave at a neighbor. A good and friendly neighbor.

86. I notice my oak tree is starting to drop leaves.

87. The automatic sprinkler system comes on.

88. The lawn sure looks nice.

89. The sky is blue.

90. I am off to work – doing a job I love with people I love.


       I've been up for 90 minutes and have experienced at least 90 blessings already. And, I experience these kinds of blessings every single day. Does His love endure forever. You bet it does!


      I challenge you to do something like this when you get up tomorrow. Count your blessings for the first 10 or 15 or 20 minutes – if you can – and you will be amazed. "Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good. His love endures forever."

You can e-mail our pastor at: Pastor, Trinity United Reformed Church
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