When people are asked what they are thankful for, of course they rattle off family, friends, home, etc. For many of us that stuff is a given–and we really ARE blessed if that is true. But it is so easy to be thankful for the obvious. Mandy at Worshipful Living has been doing a Scope bookclub about Ann Voskamp’s 1000 Gifts. One of the points she made was that we are given good gifts from God EVERY DAY. It’s not just what the regular old stuff that we should be saying thanks for.
Authenticity has also been on my heart a lot lately. We see everyone’s best face on social media, but that is our 1%. 99% of our lives is a mess, or at least we don’t feel that it’s worth shouting from the rooftops. So I wanted to take a second to say thanks for all the things that are LESS than perfect in my life because each one of those things points to the greater gifts that are quite perfect underneath it all. The less than perfect moments are what points to the real blessings.
Give thanks in everything,
for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18 HCSB
I am thankful for…
- Lost Toys–No less than 3 times in the last week, I have wanted/needed something that we haven’t been able to find. From my children’s magnifying glass that we want to use for nature study when they found a caterpillar to the toy zebra we wanted to pass around as we were playing Hot Potato at a zebra themed birthday party. My kids have a really hard time keeping up with many of their toys and belongings. The good news is that they have toys (and magnifying glasses) to lose. We are blessed with STUFF. I would dare to venture we have a lot less stuff than a lot of people, but we still have too much. For that, I am thankful.
- Failed Potty Training Attempts–There are few things I hate in life, but potty training is one of them. Failed potty training attempts mean my littlest is one step closer to being trained. It also means that my littlest one gets to be a baby a little bit longer. We have had one in diapers for 5 years straight. I can’t wait to see that phase of life be over, but also can’t stand to see it go.
- Library Fines–My kids love to read and check out lots of books. When I say LOTS, what I really mean is that it’s not unusual for our holds to be maxed out. The librarians know us by name. It’s not rare to see us leaving the library with 4 huge canvas bags of books overflowing, so much that it’s hard to carry them all. Before it broke, we took our wagon in! When you are trying to keep up with over 100 books, fines happen. It’s part of life. I am also thankful for fine amnesty week!
- My Messy Kitchen–We have food to eat. We have had days that I have literally scraped and been very creative in order to figure out what we were going to eat before pay day. I’m thankful because the mess reminds me I had something to cook and my belly is full.
- Being Tired–Yes, I’m tired! There are lots of fun events going on, places to be, kids to teach, and people to hang out with. There are late night TV dates with the love of my life. I couldn’t be luckier.
- My Baby Who Cried When I Left Her in Her Co-Op Class–My littlest is still young enough to think that I hung the moon. I am a rock star in her eyes. She is the one that is awesome, yet she is attached to me and loves me. Lucky mommy!
- Scary Health Issues–There was a month-long period last year when we thought I probably had cancer. Then a few months later, there was another month long period where they wondered if they had made a mistake and I was misdiagnosed, and really did have cancer. It was the scariest time of my life. All I could think about during those months was what it would be like to leave my family. Every moment with them is a gift–even the rough ones. Yet I never really got angry with God because every gift I had ever been blessed with was magnified. How could I be angry when God blessed me with so much to begin with? It is all on loan from Him.
- Bad photos–Few people love their photos more than I do. So to be thankful for a bad photo really means a lot. It means there was a moment that was photo worthy. There was a split second in time that I never want to forget. How lucky am I that there are so many memories I find worth tucking away in my heart?
- My Miscarriage–I can’t be thankful that my baby didn’t survive. He or she would be a cuddly little 2 month old bundle of joy right now. But I am thankful for Heaven and that one day I will get to hold my precious little one. I am thankful that that little life was inside me for a few brief weeks. I am thankful that I understand what it is to love someone so intensely that you never got to meet or even really see.
- For Not Having Everything I Want–I’m thankful that I don’t have everything I want because it reminds me that I do have what I need. So what if my wallet and purse are falling apart and out of style? We have food and shelter, clothes to wear, and kids singing in the next room. My husband who, though he has to work late, is finally on his way home.
How abundant are the good things
that you have stored up for those who fear you,
that you bestow in the sight of all,
on those who take refuge in you.” Psalm 31:19 NIV
I really couldn’t be luckier!
What bad thing has helped you realize your blessings?
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