I'm currently reading a book my daughter slyly recommended to me. I admit I read the first chapters on my Amazon Kindle and put the book down sometime last fall because I felt it was too "christiany" for me at the time. I didn't get it perhaps and was not ready to hear someone, the author Ann Voskamp, tell me how to be grateful for everything, good and bad, in my life. I was so not there. So here's the official title of this book, "One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully."
December 2011 was I think a life changing month for me for many reasons, certainly too many to express in a blog post, but I will attempt to share a few of them.
- Prayer became real. Some days like breathing, other days not so much, but I was consciously aware of my need to pray for those battling cancer, health scares, persecution, religious freedom, marriages and prodigal children,
- In Kenya we met Erin's mom Debbie and dad Larry for the first time. Joyous! We fed and loved on babies whose mothers were incarcerated. We wanted to adopt those babies but all we could do was cry.
- In Kenya, Erin & Robert said, "I Do!" It was the most fun and spirit-filled wedding I think we've ever been to. And the rain stopped days before the wedding and God brought out the sunshine.
- Baby Girl finished her work with CMF & MOHI and came back to SC for 3 weeks. We celebrated Christmas with a simple tree, some cookies and lots of deep spiritual reflection. We were and are thankful that God watched over her for 21 months and brought her safely home.
- Rafael Rivera! Now a son and part of the family. We look forward to seeing how God uses him as a minister, husband and family man. Welcome.
- Meals on Wheels. I hope you're not sick of hearing me talk about it, but honestly I love my clients and the conversations that we have. I'm blessed by these kind folk who have let me be a part of their life.
- I'm ready to start a new journal. I just this morning put the ending of my "Kenya" journal down on paper. It's there, finally finished with a strong ending. It's my tale of angst, and letting go of things that I held on to for selfish reasons; it's now my journal of joy in the journey. You don't want to read it, but trust me when I say that God had to work on my hardened, crusty, selfish heart in 2011. Letting go and finishing the journal feels right.
- New Journal will be based on "One Thousand Gifts," where I write down a few things each day I am grateful for. The fog rolling over the lake this morning, health, breath, a computer to write on. A family that loves Jesus. Grace. You get it. Awkward conversations that I cannot control? Yes, even those.
- Until next time, breathe. Breathe deeply and let go.