I often need reminders. Actually, it probably wouldn't be a bad thing to go back and read my own words from "And if the Devil Doesn't Like It," a post I wrote about choosing to be more joyful.
Yesterday was particularly hard. After an emotional day, I managed to get the boys to bed early, but the baby wouldn't sleep. Wednesdays are our longest days. Kyler leaves early for morning meetings and has teen and college gatherings that night, often not returning home until 2am. Quality time is my primary love language. I often struggle and am at my most vulnerable to frustration, lack of patience, and pitying myself on these days.
But my Father knows this. As I cried out to Him in the darkness of the nursery, where I sat rocking Callan to sleep for what seemed like the fortieth time, He whispered His love to me. I didn't hear Him until I gave up on rocking and returned downstairs, babe in my arms. I sat down in front of the computer, resigned to watch something online. But instead I got sidetracked reading a blog, which led me to another blog, which led to another, where I finally heard that whisper.
Ann at Holy Experience hosts a blog "carnival" every Monday called "One Thousand Gifts." She blogs about the things she is grateful for, the gifts bestowed upon her, down to the tiniest details of her everyday experience. I read this paragraph from her blog and knew instantly this was something I wanted, something I needed, something He was calling me to do:
I'm in. I know some days I'll be more successful than others, but I aim to make this a discipline, just like I intend to be more joyful. And I know that it will be a journey, ebbing and flowing on good days and bad alike.Too often I miss Him, oblivious, blind. I don't see all the good things that He is giving me, gracing me with, brushing my life with. True, He is everywhere, always. But maybe, before The Gift List, I thought of Him as further off, not so close. When I started to see all the things that I love bestowed upon me, I started to see Him as near, present, everywhere, showering me with good things. Seeing the things I love all around me gives me eyes to see that I am loved, that He loves me.
I want to be more grateful.
Joy and gratitude go hand-in-hand, don't you think? Recognizing the gifts you have, being grateful for them, and responding with joy. I'm so excited about this! It may not be a regular weekly posting, though I hope it is. And it's likely not going to be a Monday posting, but whatever. I just can't wait to share my joys with you, whoever you are. Look for my first post very soon!
In the past five months, I have never been more grateful that Callan would not sleep. Oh, but the whispers I would have missed had I not been through that valley last night. This is why we are to count our trials as joy.
And starting today, I begin counting whispers: His gifts to me.