Monday, July 20, 2009

One Thousand Gifts

"Gratitude...goes beyond the "mine" and "thine" and claims the truth that all of life is a pure gift. In the past I always thought of gratitude as a spontaneous response to the awareness of gifts received, but now I realize that gratitude can also be lived as a discipline. The discipline of gratitude is the explicit effort to acknowledge that all I am and have is given to me as a gift of love, a gift to be celebrated with joy."
Henri J. M. Nouwen

Celebrating the gifts:

- a brief shower, a gift to a parched land....and a picnic by the pool

- three generations sharing the fun of feeding the ducks - something the littlest ones had never done

- Papa and grandson taking a dip in the refreshment on a scorching hot day

- the joy in my Mom's face as she shared pictures of past generations with her great granddaughter

- Dad, home from the hospital, sitting in his recliner enjoying having his family gathered around him

- time with my grandchildren....the blessing of just watching and listening to them.

- reconnecting with friends we haven't heard from in over twenty-five years (I have discovered the blessing of Facebook!)

- worship with my very large church family

- watching the tears in my Pastor's eyes as dozens of hurting people knelt at the altar....coming to the One who brings peace in the midst of our storms

- laughter

I am wealthy far above anything I could ever have imagined. You fill my life with the richest of blessings. This is the abundant life You promised, and it has nothing to do with material things. It is far better than that. It is knowing that everyone most precious to me is held in Your loving hands. It is knowing that nothing can come to me that does not first pass through those same hands. It is seeing You in the moments and people in my life. It is knowing that my future is secure in You.
Thank You