It is easy to be plagued with doubts and fears. There is so much corruption prevalent in humanity. Sometimes living just hurts.
But never, ever forget the amazing things there are to be thankful for. Always remember the beautiful gift that life is. Your every heartbeat has been ordered by God and He breathes the very air into your lungs.
So dearest Self, ruminate with me, if you will. Let's remember together the ways in which we are grateful.
1. What small thing happened today that you are grateful for?
This morning I prayed. This in itself is an amazing gift, that I'm able to commune with the Creator of....well...everything. I was praying rather specifically, asking for some clarity in a particular area, wisdom to know how to move forward, if at all. Separately, I prayed that I would be able to serve Him with the very life and salvation that He gifted to me. Then I opened my Bible to read and God gave me this verse, my prayer:
Cause me to hear thy lovingkindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust. Cause me to know the way wherein I should walk; for I lift up my soul unto thee. Psalm 143:8
In that moment it felt like God was reading my prayer back to me, acknowledging and affirming my words.
2. What memory are you grateful for?
Sometimes I bring to recollection moments of time when my boys were small, when their little, warm bodies sat in my lap while I read book after book to them, when I would bury my nose into their hair and inhale life and purpose. I picture their chubby hands gripping hard onto a toy car or gripping my hand as we walked. Now, when my little boys are big boys, when we are navigating hard life decisions, when my mothering heart aches with the change, I'm ever so very thankful for the memories that come to mind, the memories that will always be mine.
3. What about your grandparents makes you grateful?
Three of my four grandparents passed away before I could know them. I've always felt a little like an orphaned granddaughter without their presence. I've never had a grandma that baked with me or gave me those big warm grandma hugs.
But Grandpa Neil gave me great memories. He smoked a pipe and drove El Camino's. He was a classy, well dressed kind of guy. He was always smiling a kind of mischievous grin. He did marry a woman named Irene late in life and their love story was a beautiful one about meeting as kids and being reunited again after long full lives apart. It always warmed my heart. I loved my grandpa.
Although I never knew the others, I do feel quite close with my grandmother just because of the stories my own mother has painted of her. She was a beautiful woman that loved the Lord. She was warm and open and loved to serve people. She was a hostess that loved to cook and open her home to guests. I'm jealous that my sister got all of her good genes.
These people that went before, the ones born and raised in an era I can only read about, the ones that grew up, fell in love, and raised families, it is to them that I am grateful, grateful for the choices they made and the history that they wrote that led to me. You are but ghosts in my memory but your lives are palpable in my heart.
4. What is something your spouse has done that you are grateful for?
There is no way that I could accurately depict the depth of gratitude I have for my husband. I'm grateful for who he is at his very core and also for who I am because of him. I'm grateful for the every day of his life that he commits to being married to me. But on a simple level, something he has done most recently: I'm thankful that when we sit down to watch The Lord of The Rings, he gets up from his cozy spot to track down my glasses, not because I asked but only because he wants me to be able to see clearly. That is love. And I am grateful.
5. What is something about yourself that you are grateful for?
There are many aspects of my personality that I would change if I could. I'd be more bold, I'd be more confident, I'd be comfortable in social situations. But I also thank God for making me just how I am, because He doesn't make mistakes. And because He doesn't make mistakes, I'm thankful for my quiet soul, for my sensitive heart, my awareness of people. I'm grateful for my body's ability to carry me through yoga. I'm grateful for my abilities, however humble, to play instruments and sing. I'm thankful for my capacity to live and love and see beauty.