A Different Perspective on Giving Thanks

There are moments in life when you just have to pause, take a deep breath, and thank the Lord for His many blessings. It can be so easy to overlook the abundance of blessings that the Lord has flooded our hearts and lives with.

There are moments when we complain about the piles of dishes to clean and the endless mountains of laundry to wash and fold, but we are so blessed with food to eat and have clothes to wear.

There are moments when we are frustrated to the point of tears because our 2 year old continues to throw half-eaten food, playdough, and crayons 5,000 times a day while we continue to say “no” and attempt to teach them wrong and right. While the moments can be frustrating, the years are short. We can be thankful to have such energetic children (please remind me of this again tomorrow😩) and this unique and life-changing journey of parenthood. This opportunity to learn the sacred art of patience and persistence. 

Just yesterday, our apartment building caught fire. One of the apartments under us was on fire. There was something so surreal and eye-opening about seeing the place that we currently reside in breathe heavy gray smoke, uncertain of the damage that was occurring. While we only had some smoke and airing out to do in our home, so many flashes took place before my very eyes. It was overwhelming and to be honest, I am still processing it. Processing the what ifs and prayers of gratefulness. Seeing someone right below us lose all of their “things.” Wondering if we would have our beds to return to that evening.

There are so many what ifs that our minds often run to, but I am so utterly thankful for our safety and the safety of everyone involved.

I’m thankful for the people who showed up at the exact moment we needed them yesterday. I’m thankful that my firefighter husband was able to answer my troublesome and frantic call and leave work because I told him our building was on fire. He is hardly ever able to answer my phone calls and is usually out on calls most of the 24 hour shift himself. That was a blessing in and of itself. Thankful. So grateful.

There are moments when you need to look at your spouse, job, church family, the opportunity to sleep in a warm bed, take a hot shower, and eat a meal at the dinner table with the people you love most and realize how blessed you are.

Our world is full of hatred, anger, rage, and unexpected tragedies. It is important to take time for moments of Thanksgiving – moments where you choose to pick out the blessings in life rather than notice all of the bad things happening in the world and more specifically, in your own life.

If we let the evil things consume us, our mindset will become dull, angry, overwhelmed, negative, and we will lose sight of the many joyous things we have been blessed with. Man, oh man, do I fall short in this area on a day to day basis.

We must choose to dwell on the positives so that our brain does not become consumed by the negativity and let a negative outlook overtake our minds, hearts, and lives.

We are offered the choice to wallow and permanently live in our times of brokenness and fear. Or, we can let God mend our hearts and transform us. To set us on a new path or to start our journey in a new direction to show us what it’s really like to be thankful.

Today, I am so utterly and completely thankful for:

  • The piles of laundry I get to wash and fold on a daily basis.
  • The toddler I get to chase around, the snacks I get to vacuum, and the messy nose I get to wipe.
  • My firefighter husband’s desire to run into burning buildings and help those during their most trying hours. He is our hero! 
  • Our safety and health and the continued protection of our unborn daughter.
  • Family that always shows up and shows out.
  • A God who sees me at my worst and still loves me, forgives me, and never abandons me.
  • My calling to be a full-time mom. It’s not always easy, not always popular, but it continues to teach me SO many lessons. And it has always been my dream.
  • Writing and the projects forthcoming. I’m so thankful that God gives us the ability and opportunity to write what’s on our heart – it’s how some process events and attempt to communicate their emotions and struggles with other people. Writing can also help us work on our vulnerability and authenticity – to (hopefully) encourage other people facing their own struggles and tragedies and triumphs.
  • That God can use struggles for triumph. God can use eye-opening events to teach us something new. So we must throw on our backpack, lace up our hiking boots, (maybe pack some snacks) and be ready to journey into the unknown – asking God, “What are you trying to show me or teach me through this?”

Romans 8:28 (NIV), “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

“Don’t dwell on what went wrong. Instead, focus on what to do next. Spend your energies on moving forward toward finding the answer.” -Denis Waitley

“Every morning brings new potential, but if you dwell on the misfortunes of the day before, you tend to overlook tremendous opportunities.” -Harvey Mackay

Please join me over on my Instagram and Facebook page this week as we reflect on things we are thankful for.

I’d love to hear from you! What are you thankful for today?

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