Monday, December 31, 2012

Christmas Reflections

Christmas!  What a wonderful time of the year.  This year is especially wonderful as I reflect on all the wonderful things goin on in our lives.  I had another colonoscopy and the doctor's visit last Friday was very affirming.  Dr. B said, "I'm writing this into your medical file.  You are special."  I was happy to tell the doctor that the Lord has kept His word given to me in a dream last year, "I'm healing you."  This is cause for great rejoicing.  Wild.  Crazy.  Exuberant praise!  What a wonderful Christmas gift.  I asked Frances, "Why?"  I know it is not because I am any different than anyone else.  God knows how weak and frail and insignificant I am.  I did not fast a long fast, or give extra money to the church or have a special preacher lay hands on me.  I did have many friends praying for me, I know...but all I can say is that God, in his sovereignty CHOSE to heal me.  I'm grateful.

Family.  This year for the first time in many years I find all of my brothers and sisters and our mother living in the same town.  This is most unusual for our bunch.  I've lived in South America and in Africa for 24 years.  One brother lived in Corpus Christi, TX and one in Louisiana for many of those years.  Mom and Dad lived in different states over those years, pastoring churches.  But now - this Christmas, we were all together for things like caroling, church attendance, parties, gift exchanges and giving thanks for each other and how the Lord has directed our lives.

Our Fred Brannen family - Frances and I and our three girls and their children and their children's children all live in America.  Actually we are most proud to have a daughter married to a pastor...and they are serving the Lord way up north in Watertown, NY.  We were able to talk with them in the past few days via Skype.  How wonderful to see the beautiful faces of our two grand-daughters who are still at home there.  Our other two girls and their children were all able to be with us.  I managed to be there for a Christmas play in which a son-in-law and a granddaughter participated.  What a treat.  Our children make us very proud as they serve the Lord.

Our church - We joined the Victory Drive Church of God here in Cleveland this year.  We both enjoy the fellowship of all the members.  I teach Sunday School part time and have filled in for the pastor when called on.  Music is a special part of our church life and I've been privileged to sing with two wonderful families who are professionals.  The Ray Branham Family and The Vaughan Cunningham Family are really talented musicians.  We are blessed in this spiritual haven.

One of our angels

Daughter Ruthie

Mom with a fruit basket

Brother-in-law, Michael

Our friend, Rob D. that we met in Kenya

Music at our church

Chirch Christmas Party

Our Pastor
 
My computer friends - You - maybe you don't know what a lift some of you give to my spirit when I read your blogs.  I pray for you and yours to have a blessed and prosperous New Year!

5 comments:

jack69 said...

Ahhh Friend Fred. Great to read about the family. That is fantastic to have all the family in the Cleveland area. Just about a miracle in its self, after they way you guys were scattered. What a joy for mama Brannen to have her family near. She is such a dear and a joy to know. Hug the lovely Lady Frances for Sherry and KISS her for me!!! That lady is as sweet a sugar!

Love to the family from your home state, and the World of Mickey!!!

Betsy Adams said...

God may have blessed you, Fred, but God blessed me ---just getting to know you. I am so happy that you are doing so well healthwise. God Bless You... So glad also that so many family members are nearby now... Hope 2013 is an AWESOME year for you --and your family.
Hugs,
Betsy

Ginny said...

Wonderful to see a post from you Fred!! And so glad you are now well and having fun and family gatherings!! Happy New YEAR! And I know this is a very special one.

Joyful said...

It's been my pleasure to get to know you through your blog and to pray for you and to praise God with you. I pray continued great health for you and Frances in 2013. You are so blessed to have so many members of your family living near.

Crystal Mary said...

Happy New Year to you also Fred, What a joyous Christmas time it has been for you. Praise God for the all clear on your heal..He is the Lord who healeth you.. Praise His name. Happy New Year to all of you and many more blessing than can be counted. Hug Crystal

About Me

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Cleveland, TN, United States
I am Fred Alton Brannen, the son of Louis A. Brannen (deceased) and Bonnie Jones Brannen, Louis was an Ordained Bishop with the Church of God. Bonnie is an Ordained Licensed Minister and at 89 years of age is still actively engaged in speaking and singing engagements. I am married to the former Frances Hildreth. We celebrated 53 years of marriage this past June and we are the parents of 3, grand-parents of 10, and great-grandparents of 10. I pastored in Tennessee for 24 years and served the Church in some capacity in missions for over 23 years. I retired from full-time ministry in August of 2008 but remain active, speaking and singing and teaching whenever opportunity affords itself. In January of 2010 I received a letter of commendation for having been credentialed as a minister in the Church of God for 50 years! My family is very important to me. Our get togethers are always noisy affairs and most times will include family sing-alongs. The children love their Mom's cooking so we have the privilege of seeing them regularly! WE LOVE having them over.

TheCabin on Day One

TheCabin on Day One
Fred Alton