Monday, September 27, 2010

Multitude Monday

Happy Monday!  Here are some highlights of my 'gifts' from last week, on my Thousand Gifts journey:

13. The journal my sweet hubby surprised me with to document my 1000 gifts.
20. Our friends being able to bring home the first of their premature twins, Eli, from the hospital.
23. Finding grace for myself, little by little...knowing that 'tomorrow is another day', another opportunity to    try again.
25. Becoming more aware of and longing for the quiet.
27. My Pastor's vision and call to action
30. Special time relaxing, hangin' out with my family watching a movie together.
32. Hugs from my Hollie.  :-)
34. My 6yr-old son telling me he loves my corn casserole.  ;-)
35. Watching my kids make up silly, non-sensical games & then cracking up at themselves.  Priceless!
37. Our first beautiful Fall day!

Thanks for joining me on my journey.  If you would like to join The Gratitude Community with your own journey of One Thousand Gifts, you can link up here at A Holy Experience

holy experience

Monday, September 20, 2010

Multitude Monday

holy experience

Today, I'm starting a new 'experiment', if you will...a gratitude list.  But not just any gratitude list - this one is a little different.  I've done 'Thankful Thursday' lists here before, and have been thinking of starting a more 'daily' gratitude journal recently.  Then as I was exploring (in)Courage today, I happened upon the blog of one of the authors, Ann Voskamp at A Holy Experience and discovered the Thousand Gifts List.  I think it was a divine appointment, as I fell in love with and am intrigued by this idea.  Here is a sampling of what the Thousand Gifts List is in Ann's words:
"I am daily jotting down items on my Thousand Gifts List, working, one-by-one, up to a thousand gifts. Not of gifts I want. But of gifts I have.

As the moments slip down the hour glass of time, I am scratching down the gifts---just as they happen, as they arrive, as they are unwrapped---that He has given that make my life grace, the daily graces that He gives in an infinite number of ways, that stir me.

I am seeing things I have never seen before, atuned and aware of this constant, endless stream of gifts from His hand. I am one waking from slumber....from the stupor of indifference and ignorance. I have sight, fresh and keen---the world is new and full of His gifts.

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."
WOW. Join me if you will, on this journey of enlightenment and gratitude.  I haven't figured out yet how many items I want to aim to list each day, or if I even do.  I may just keep my journal handy and jot them down as they come to me and see how that goes.  And I'm sure it will be varied - some of it may be 'deep', some of it will be 'small', silly stuff. (see below) But I will post each week for Multitude Mondays some or perhaps all of my weekly discoveries.  I'll think on it and let you know my plan next week.  Here are my first gifts:

1.  My beautiful, perfect children.  Not because they're perfect - but they're perfect gifts from God to me as their mother.   
2.  The way my 2yr-old daughter lowers her brow when talking intensely about something. 
3.  Sonic ice.
4.  The beautiful music at A Holy Experience's  website.
5.  The amazing (in)Courage online never ceases to bless me in ways only God would have a hand in!

I am so excited to see what God has in store as I open myself up to discover His blessings and handiwork that are all around me, and perhaps to even explore a little more of myself.

To start your own Thousand Gifts List click here and join the Gratitude Community!  Thanks, to Ann at A Holy Experience for this gift of grace!

Friday, September 3, 2010

The Cleaner

I cleaned the bathroom mirror the other day, which had been clouded with water and toothpaste spots.   When I was finished I stopped and just took in the view. Not of myself, mind you…just ‘the view’ in general.  The clean, clear, unobstructed view. Then it struck me:  My spirit felt like the dirty mirror.  In the midst of my busyness & preoccupation with my son starting Kindergarten and new schedule, I had slipped away from time in the Word and prayer, out of communion with God.  Plus, this particular day was a challenge, having gotten behind in said new schedule, throwing off the rest of the day, along with some other issues.  So I was tired, frustrated, feeling defeated and inadequate. One of those things we women - especially moms - tend to do…trying to be that ever-elusive and basically *imaginary* Superwoman.  I even cried out to God at one point (literally), asking, “Lord, why can’t I do anything RIGHT?!”

Then, standing there in front of that newly-clean mirror, it became CLEAR. (Pun intended!)  I had let my spirit become cloudy with muck and yuck, having neglected that time with God and in the Word.  He is ‘The Cleaner’ who can wash away the water spots, and the dirt and muck from my soul.  But I have to ask for His services.  And He’s always available – 24 hours a day, in fact – if only I’d make myself available!  And I suspect He’ll remind me that His mercy and grace are included in that cleaning package, along with His love and forgiveness. And then He might offer this:

A woman who is imperfect, in need of grace, gloriously gifted, flawed and beautiful who dares to believe she's loved through it all by a God who has an amazing purpose for her life. No need to apply. You're already known. You've already been chosen. The Lord looks at the heart. “ (Based on 1 SAMUEL 16:7)         ~Holley Gerth

I’m gonna go buy stock in The Cleaner…