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Life Lessons

By Doug Harrell

Mitchell CountyDoug Harrell



I once heard a man say if you think about how blessed you are to have what you have, rather than what you don’t have, you will be surprised at how much you can achieve!  Wow, what a message!  Changing our focus on things makes all the difference, the song “Count Your Blessings” goes like this:

“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 has done.


Count your blessings, name them one by one,

Count your blessings, see what God has done!”

One of the greatest blessings, if you are an American citizen, is just being born here or living here in America.  I know we aren’t perfect, but I have been blessed to be able to travel around this world, there is no place on earth like America!  We did not get to choose where we were born, we just won the lottery!

Travel to some other places, go out in the sugar cane fields that are still harvested by hand with a machete, hauled in by oxen, and the families are housed in 9×9 huts.  Look at the news of people in communist countries that are imprisoned or killed because they are Christians if they are found with a Bible, too bad!

Again, I may not be politically correct here, but I give thanks for our great military, our law enforcement community, our first responders and firefighters.  I give thanks for pastors that preach God’s truth, for the opportunity to be able to write these daily devotions that I post without being imprisoned as a spy against the government.  I give thanks that I can say what I believe and have the freedom to say it.  If we are not careful, there are many that would take away that freedom.  It is not politically correct on many of our campuses to profess Christian beliefs, to believe that God created us male or female, that marriage was between a man and a woman, to believe that men should go to one bathroom and women to another.  It is not correct to think that men that are biological males (but say they are females) should be allowed to compete against women in sporting events!

When we count our blessings, one of the things that we must not forget is that our freedoms are not free, someone paid the price to defend those freedoms.  The question here is, are you willing to stand up, are you willing to say, these things I believe?  We may not all be soldiers, but will we be willing to stand up to ridicule and scorn by letting our faith be evident to all.  The song “Stand up, Stand up for Jesus” says it this way:


“Stand up, stand up for Jesus,

Ye soldiers of the cross;

Lift high his royal banner,

It must not suffer loss.

From victory unto victory

His army shall He lead,

Till every foe is vanquished,

And Christ is Lord indeed.”

Today, more than any time in my memory, it is critical that we put on the armor of God, that we are willing to raise the sword of faith.

Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong.”

1 Corinthians 16:13 KJV

Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.”

1 Corinthians 15:58 KJV

Now is the time for Christians to stand up and be counted, to be bold in their faith, to not cower in fear of rejection, to state firmly, in God’s word I believe and will not waver.  To vote for leaders that will honor and uphold our constitution and our laws, that will value the heritage of our great nation, to proudly say, “IN GOD WE TRUST.”

To God be the glory, ?❤️


Doug Harrell is a life-long resident of Mitchell County, Owner of Harrell Hill Farms, a member of Bear Creek Baptist Church and former publisher of Blue Ridge Christian News. You can find him on Facebook at

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