This has been a challenging summer.
Actually, its been a challenging year. Adversity: personal health issues, the death of beloved friends, cancer striking a precious little one, emergencies, and more have been consistent reminders that I can’t do this on my own. I love Lauren Daigle’s simple confession, “My hands are weary, I need Your rest.” (I Will Trust in You) Not only are my hands weary but my entire body and my mind. Yet today my heart is full, so full of love and gratitude that I scarcely know where to end.
Yes, you read correctly. It’s easy to begin in gratitude but where does it end? This morning as I completed my scripture writing and reflected upon it, as typically happens I find myself in the midst of a conversation with God. I began to thank him for so many wonderful things that had occurred yesterday. Let me preface by saying, yesterday was exhausting. Truly, completely, physically exhausting. I chauffeured my ‘delivering-Monday-morning-pregnant daughter’ to her OB appointment and then our 11-2/3 month old grandson to his follow-up appointment with his pediatrician. Follow-up for what, you say? A week-end ER visit and 36 hour hospital stay. Enough said. And just for good measure, yes, this is the son of the very pregnant daughter. It was 98 degrees outside with a heat index of about 103. Pregnant mother and her son were not happy.
You get the picture. It was a long, strenuous, emotional, contraction-filled, hot as the blazes day. But SO many things went right. And that is why my heart is so full. I began to thank God for those things and even the things that weren’t so great, but as I recalled them there were so many wonderful praises. Let me share just a few.
- The grandson is healing very nicely and will be just fine.
- My daughter could possibly go into labor before Monday, but it just means we get to enjoy grandbaby #five a couple of days early. He is doing great.
- A dear friend drops everything to provide childcare for the day so I can chauffeur and help out my daughter.
- My son began his senior year of college AND a part-time job in his chosen area of study!
- Hubby’s long awaited “part” for his combine arrived. (For farmers that’s a BIG deal.)
- Our weekly Bible study was filled with discussion, insight and praise. And, a dear friend was able to attend because of a schedule change at work!
- A fresh tomato sandwich for supper.
- A tough as nails gentleman from church celebrated his 91st birthday.
- A new friend’s surgery was successful.
- Our bottle fed calf, Harry, is growing and thriving – despite being rejected by his mom at birth. He’s a twin and it happens.
- My nephew is marrying the most wonderful young lady this month!
- I received an email with a treasured picture of me with my lifelong mentor.
- And I slept, really slept a deep, restful, contented sleep.
All of these are such simple things. But I am grateful for each one and there were more, many more. That is why my heart is full. My list could go on and on and on without end. Our lives are so full of graces that we sometimes fail to acknowledge them. This morning I realized my list of thank you’s was far longer than my list of “would you’s?”. So, I simply stopped after the thank yous. HE knows my needs. Like parents that become weary of hearing their children say, “I want . . I need . . .” I think God must smile when we simply say, “Thank you, thank you, thank you.”
My heart is full, not just today, but if I stop to think for only a moment – it is full of gratitude everyday.
Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion;
therefore I will wait for him.” Lamentations 3:22-24
Let your heart be full of praise and gratitude today. Look around you, regardless of your circumstances, no matter how dire the situation there is much for which we can be grateful. Commit one day to only praise and gratitude. HE deserves it and it is transformative for the heart.
Your ARE blessed,
“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” John 10:10