When I look back at the last 12 months, we have had quite a few difficult things to work through. Continued pandemic, two surgeries, a death in our family, health scares, a wreck…..
I found myself using the word ‘overwhelmed’ often. Generally, I can take things as they come and make the best of them. Hasn’t been as easy lately.
In the seasonal spirit of gratitude, here are some of the things that bring thankfulness to my heart:
1) My parents. I am who I am because of their example.
2) My siblings. My brother is two years younger than me and my sister is four years younger. Being the oldest is harder than it looks! Right, D?
3) My salvation. For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son …
4) My man. In 1974 he was too old for me (according to my daddy). Funny how by 1977, he wasn’t. He provides me security, wisdom, comfort, and many laughs!
5) My in-laws. They are both living in glory now but gave unconditionally over and over again.
6) Jacob. While it is not what I planned, being able to aim to meet his needs is my greatest privilege.
7) Josh. What a blessing to watch him marry, become a successful entrepreneur, and parent three girls.
8) Sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law. We may not always see eye-to-eye on topics but I know I can count on them. And it is super fun anytime we can have a game day!
9) Granddaughters. Nothing like ‘em! Oh, that I could see them every day!
10) Extended family– aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, and nephews.
11) Friends—some go way, way back and some I’ve not known nearly as long. But, the blessing of friends cannot be overstated. Be a friend whenever you can.
12) My small group. Friends are friends forever when the Lord’s the Lord of them.
13) My Sunday School class and church family. We haven’t been able to go as much but it doesn’t mean they aren’t important.
14) Pets. We have two golden retrievers right now. They are our 3rd and 4th of that breed. Yes, there is hair, hair, and more hair. But in exchange, there are snuggles, silliness, lots of love, and bouncing excitement. Every single day those brown eyes light up mine.
15) Neighbors. There’s something special about knowing your neighbors. It takes effort but the reward is great.
16) Sitters. I cannot say enough about dependable sitters. They are a Godsend that makes our lives easier.
17) Jacob’s Day Program. We are so very grateful there is a place where he enjoys going!
18) Health. I’ve had a couple of scares in the last few months but nothing life-threatening. Grateful for that!
19) God’s provision. We have everything we need and more.
20) God’s protection. Nine days ago, a Fed Ex truck backed into the side of my moving vehicle. I didn’t see him, heard it first. While I was quite shaken, I sustained no injuries. Jacob was not with me which was a huge blessing because it hit on the side he rides. Mike was nearby so he got to the accident scene quickly. The vehicle is beyond repair from the damage but we have so much to be thankful for!
21) God’s peace. When I’m overwhelmed, I can call on the Prince of Peace. His spirit lives in me to bring calm to my chaos.
22) God’s promises. Having said goodbye to my dad just 4 months ago, I know that he is in heaven and I’ll see him again.
23) Prayer. God gives a way to talk to him and listen. It’s always the best thing to do in any situation.
If you find yourself alone today, reach out to someone else who may be alone as well. If you are with friends and/or family, look around and count your blessings.
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.James 1:17
God has been so good to me that my heart cannot help but overflow with thanksgiving!
November photos from several years in the past to last week. The first one shows Jacob snoozing at his aunt and uncle’s house one Thanksgiving. It’s the only one I could find of him on that day. If there’s a crowd, he’d rather not be in the middle!