Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Notice Him

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“For everything God created is good and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving…” 1 Timothy 4:4 

I stare out my picture window into the cold, gray November sky. Chilling winds bare the last golden leaves from the maple limbs carpeting the neighborhood streets and lawns. The first snow sneaks in early, barely visible, and almost undetected—or maybe I just missed it. 

Living a year of great extremes, my heart’s become a bit numb and I miss the obvious things sometimes, like the first fallen snow.  

Experiencing life and death, rejoicing and mourning all together and in multiples with little time for processing, my emotions hang in limbo. Days and weeks jumble together and the months flip forward like I’m thumbing my way through a magazine in the grocery checkout line. While I crave time to reflect, family needs fill my calendar—the young and old alike—and life moves forward.   

And so, on rare occasions when I’m alone and my “to do” list is empty I add to another—my One Thousand Gifts list. Ann Voskamp taught me this—how when your heart is heavy and your days are busy, consciously set your eyes on the horizon and keep watch. Keep watch for all the big and little gifts God bestows on you every day—unique pleasures that whisper, “I AM here and will never leave you” and “I love you.”  

Give thanks because as we express our gratitude, a wellness comes and joy erupts—lifts us closer to heaven. Then, write them down, list them out one-by-one because, as Ann admits truth, our hearts need reminding that God’s goodness surrounds us.

#571 First snow

#572 Fourth grandchild announced

#573 Husband’s victory

#574 African children’s God-joy

#575 Anticipating thanksgiving celebrations

#576 A father remembered 

Every day God’s blessings surround us. Notice them. Give thanks for them. Write them down so that on days when thanksgiving comes hard, your hearts will be reminded of at least a thousand different ways God loves you!  

To start your own One Thousand Gifts list, here's some help Ann gives. Just click here.

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