Wednesday, November 23, 2011

The Annual Post of Gratitude

Thanksgiving is tomorrow, and while this year I have found myself just generally more grateful for the blessings in my life - Thanksgiving is definitely a time to be intentional about that gratitude. After all, giving thanks for the abundance and blessing in our lives is the whole reason that the holiday was established in the first place (even though our culture would have us believe that it's about turkey & football).



"But Thanksgiving is more than eating, Chuck. You heard what Linus was saying out there. Those early Pilgrims were thankful for what had happened to them, and we should be thankful, too. We should just be thankful for being together. I think that's what they mean by 'Thanksgiving,' Charlie Brown." - Marcie from the Peanuts gang
 
So... what are some of the things that I am thankful for in 2011?

I am thankful for grace... When you allow grace to become a driving force in your life, it is amazing what can happen in your relationships with others. For example, a little while ago Steve came to me to talk about something that he knew would bother me but that had to be addressed. Under normal circumstances, I would have freaked out and let my emotions get the better of me. How dare I not be taken into consideration! How dare he not put me first! But I looked at Steve and saw someone who was humbling himself and coming to his wife in a step of healing and hope. Selfishness and anger would have just damaged our marriage if I had reacted so poorly; to react without grace would have made Steve think that he could not come to me to discuss things that need to be discussed. I intentionally allowed grace to rule my actions... and the result was understanding, discussion, healing, and love. That is just one example of how I have seen grace transform a situation from something potentially awful to something potentially beautiful. I am thankful for grace.

I am thankful for access to great healthcare... I think that in the US, decent healthcare is something that we can easily take for granted. However, being pregnant has given me a renewed gratitude for the level of healthcare that we have in our country. At nine weeks, I called our OB and left a message with the nurse because of some symptoms we were having. After a brief conversation, they brought me in for an emergency appointment, examined me, discussed what they saw, answered our questions, and issued instructions. Things were fine - but any time I've had a question or concern I can just call up and they are there to respond. There are so many countries in this world that do not have this easy access to good healthcare... and we should not take it for granted. Not for one second. And if able, I would encourage you to find an organization that provides healthcare to less fortunate regions of the world and support them with financial resources, supplies, or your time.

I am thankful for my wonderful husband...  The other night after getting back from signing our will/health care proxy/power of attorney papers and then finishing the update on our family finances, Steve looked at me and said "See? Didn't I tell you I would take care of you?". I looked back at him and said "I married you because I knew you would". Let me make this clear - it's not just our finances where he takes care of me. Steve is there every time I have a success to cheer me on, a failure to help me see how to improve, a bandaid when I cut myself (usually cutting veggies...), and to catch me when I fall (usually quite literally). He listens to me talk through things, holds me when I cry, laughs at my stupid jokes, is willing to work through both of our shortcomings, and tries to protect me from things he knows will hurt. Now... he's not perfect, and neither am I. There's no such thing as a perfect person. But he's pretty darn good to have as a husband and best friend; we could lose all of our "stuff" and money tomorrow... and we'd still have each other, and he would still take care of me. I am grateful for him every day.

I am thankful for our Little Person... As of today, I am 16 weeks and 5 days pregnant. Not a day passes that I am not incredibly grateful that God has blessed us with a child and that I pray for our child to continue to grow and be healthy. It is absolutely insane to think that Steve and I are going to be parents, and it's crazier to think that God is trusting US with the duties of parenting. I am so thankful for the opportunity to love on this Little Person, help them to learn the ways of the world, and just grow our little family. I love the moments when Steve gets close to my growing little bump and starts talking to him/her... "Hi, Baby!". It is such an amazing time for us right now, and I am cherishing every moment of it.

Those are just some of the highlights of the things that I'm grateful for this year. There are others, of course, but I only have so much room in a blog post.  

What about you? What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving? Make sure to take the time and reflect on the blessings in your life this weekend!!!

"Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus." - 1 Thessalonians 5:18 (NLT)

1 comment:

mattbortmess.com said...

You two are going to be great parents!!! Happy Thanksgiving!