Sunday, December 1, 2013

With a Thankful Heart...

During the month of November, I took part in a sort of meme that I had noticed people were doing leading up to Thanksgiving. Each day, I posted a picture and note of something that I was thankful for. Some of them were relatively inconsequential - like sales on kids clothes - and some of them were a bit deeper - aspects of my faith or family and friends. Originally, I wasn't going to participate in this meme and then I thought about it a bit before I jumped in. There were a couple of reasons that I decided to go ahead and take part.

30 Days of Thankfulness - Days 1-6
Running water, imagination, ability to cook, kids' sales & coupons, childcare workers, our family photographer

The first reason is that while I am always grateful for the things in my life, there is something about intentionally thinking about the many ways that I am either blessed or touched or impacted that really helps me to persist in being genuinely grateful. From my husband to my kids to running water to the minds that invent washable crayons - there are so many things both big and small that I can be thankful for at any given point in the day. If I ever stop being thankful, I might start to take my blessings for granted and not see them as gifts given to me and others by God. And so, every once in a while I think it's a worthwhile exercise to stop and reflect on the various things I am thankful for in my life.

30 Days of Thankfulness, days 7-12
God's promise to be there, great minds, answered prayers, our veterans, our new baby's health, and my husband

The second reason I went through this exercise was that I had a small hope that I would also inspire other people to pause and think about the things that they are thankful for in their lives.

30 Days of Thankfulness, days 13-18
My parents, great medical care, people who invent recipes, our pediatrician, my moms group, & being a stay-at-home mom.

Why now? Because I feel like the real reason for the Thanksgiving season is often lost in a shuffle of giant feasts and food comas, family obligations, high expectations, football rivalries, and preparations for intense shopping expeditions. While I think that any of those things can be an extremely fun experience, I also think that it's important that we take MORE time during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend to pause and be thankful for what we have in our lives - no matter how little or how plentiful it is.

30 Days of Thankfulness, days 19-24
Our Will, his relationship with his Daddy, our friends, my siblings, our church, and NAPS!

My posts on "30 Days of Thankfulness" technically ended yesterday, but I feel a renewed sense of gratitude for the many ways God has provided for my family, answered prayers according to his plan for our family and friends, and just cast His love out in so many ways. I am thankful for the various ways He has gifted people that make our world such an interesting plays. God is so, so good. I am thankful for His plans, I am thankful for His love, and I am thankful for his blessings.

30 Days of Thankfulness - Days 25-30
Children's perspective, my extended family, our Journey group, critical folks (PD, FD, EMS, etc.) working on holidays, God's abundant provision, Jesus' death on the cross

I'll close with a wish of a wonderful holiday season to everyone who reads this and their families. May you enjoy richly all the ways you've been blessed.

"Let me shout God's name with a praising song, let me tell his greatness in a prayer of thanks." (Psalm 69:30, The Message)

No comments: