I have been reading Ann Voskamp's book One Thousand Gifts over the past few weeks. It has really been a challenge to me to be truly thankful...for everything! Yesterday was a hard day...I won't bore you with the gory details, but let's just say I had a non-napping baby who was exhausted and a dinner to prepare for a family at church...there were lots of tears shed yesterday. But when I caught myself getting frustrated and angry, Holy Spirit told me to give thanks (a challenge from the book), and it was HARD! Really hard! I had no idea how difficult it is to give thanks aloud when things aren't going my way...did you get that? MY way. At one point I simply said, "I don't want to thank you for this!" and in that recognized my true heart as a blasphemer. Wow! So often we think we are "Okay"...alright maybe you don't, but I sure do! But when I saw my heart in those moments of stress it was ugly.
I am so thankful for what God has been teaching me through the book. Life really is full of joy when we see every moment for what it is, God ordained! When I refuse to give thanks in hard moments, I reject God's sovereign plan for that moment and in that become a blasphemer...that's hard stuff that I don't typically think about, but it's been hitting me lately!
Its interesting how all of this has been stirring in me since a week or so before Thanksgiving! I feel like my Thanksgiving celebration this year was different, less stressful and more enjoyable partly because of the work going on inside of me. I have been meaning to do this, so I guess now is as good of a time as any. Here are some photos from our Thanksgiving celebration!
E's turkey shirt made my Grammy!!
Dessert....who needs turkey with sweets like these?!?
Our "Thankfulness Board"
I made the board, and mom made the leaves, acorns, etc. out of paper from an old book!
They turned out so cute!
Each person was required to write something(s) they were thankful for and post it on the board before we ate.
Place Cards--they turned out pretty cute if I do say so myself :)
I couldn't resist posting this...we had a little issue with the wine!
It was hysterical, and finally we just pushed the cork into the bottle and went on with our lives!
There's the cork, cork screw and all!
The finished "Thankfulness Board"
My final words today will be a challenge...seemingly simple yet extremely difficult (if you are like me)--
Be thankful in ALL things...even the things you don't understand...even the teeny tiny things that make life great (like holding a warm cup of coffee in your hands). Enjoy every moment. Thankfulness will bring joy to the good, mundane, and hard times.
If you get a chance, pick up a copy of Ann Voskamp's book! It's a must read!