Today I found myself saying, Thank You, Lord, throughout the day and want to write these moments down so as to not forget the blessings that make an ordinary day extraordinary.
I am thankful for the opportunity to stay home with my sick child. I remember when I was his age, if I was sick I had to stay at my grandparents’ home for the day while my mom worked. She wanted to be home with me, and I knew that even as a tween, but she had no choice. My grandparents were wonderful people. I loved them dearly. But, no one fully replaces a mother’s touch. She knows what your favorite drink is, television show is, and when you took your medicine last. I got to be that to my sweet boy today. With every cough, I winced in compassionate pain. With every ringing of the thermometer, I said a prayer it wasn’t high. I loved being able to put socks on his feet and kiss the bottoms of them, breathing in the smell of clean laundry. I loved propping his pillows, filling his humidifier and stroking his hair. I am blessed to be here for my family and there’s nowhere else I’d rather be.
I am thankful that I had to park so far from the doors of Wal Mart this evening. I trolled the parking lot in my van, like everyone else, hoping for a close spot. It’s cold and wet outside – bleck – and I wanted to get inside asap. But, no such space could be found. Two blessings popped up in the parking lot aisle. First, I was stuck behind a couple walking so slowly I thought I would go insane! They never once cared that I was behind them. They were intent on their conversation, pushing their cart and looking at each other while speaking. Their gray hair and wrinkled skin were signs of many years together. My frustration (because had they moved over a few feet I could have driven around them) turned into a longing that I hope to be old and gray, leaving the store with my man, and be so in love after all those years that I cared not who was around me as long as I was with him and listening to the sound of his voice and admiring the smile on his handsome face.
I am thankful for grace. I am a rule follower, but not perfect by any stretch of the imagination. After meandering around the super center (overwhelming!), I snaked my way to check out. The endless checkouts were full of people. My head spun. I found a 20 items or less lane and dashed for it. Once in line, I began to count my items. Ug. There were a few more than 20 hiding beneath the bulkier stuff that covered them. I don’t care if someone with more than 20 is in front of me, but these days everyone keeps their panties in so much of a wad that I had no idea what society would do to me. Trust me, I’ve had people say the weirdest things to me over the years for far less than 20+ items. The cashier was just as friendly to me at the end of the sale as she was at the beginning – after ringing up said 20+ items. I really appreciated her turning a blind eye. And, for the woman behind me. She could see into my cart – full view. But, she said nothing. I was late picking up my other kids, it was dark, hubby was at home with sick son waiting with dinner…I really just needed to check out and leave. It’s as though God shushed everyone and let me pass. If we are honest, we all need a pass sometimes. That’s why I don’t freak out when I’m the one waiting in line behind said 20+ item customer. It must be their turn for a pass.
I am thankful that I could go to the store and replace the empty bag of cough drops, a bottle of vitamin C and honey without fearing an overdraft in my account.
I am thankful for driving my teens all over town tonight to their activities because: it means they are healthy and can do a sport they love to do, we have a van to drive around in that is warm and reliable (and although it’s 6 years old it’s paid for!!!), and it creates stolen moments of time with my teens that lends itself to great conversation with a captive audience – and that goes both ways. My son drives, so he gives me a break and the 3 of us get to shoot the breeze about our days. It is precious time that is the fabric of our days.
I am thankful for a faithful husband and children who love me no matter what. We are a motley crew of love, forgiveness and laughter all wrapped up into one ball of organized chaos and I love it.
I am thankful for my dog who always greets me at the door – every single time. She thinks each of us hung the moon! Everyone needs someone in their life who thinks they can do no wrong – even if that someone is furry and walks on all fours.
I am thankful for a hot meal and deeply spiritual conversation with the family tonight. Good stuff. Nothing taken for granted.
I am thankful for a moment tonight to reflect on some of the blessings of the day. These are just a few.
I am thankful for the opportunity to pray for friends and family. We are community and have each others’ backs. What would I do without them?
I am thankful for praying over my children. What an honor. I love that my oldest son, in the nest for only a couple of more years, still comes to me at my computer late at night just to tell me he loves me one more time. And for my daughter who asks me to help fix her hair. For a teenage girl to ask her mom to help her with her hair – that’s a huge compliment! I love how she and I have our own girl club here, being outnumbered by the guys and all.
People spend too much energy rating their blessings. If it’s big, then it’s special and deserves praise. I love the big blessings, but it’s the small ones that remind me how well God knows me – and that’s a big deal. He finds ways to bless us that are so personal, so unique to just our lives, it makes me smile and shake my head in wonder.
I am thankful for His love, protection and hand of mercy that leaves its fingerprints all over my life. When a believer begins to grasp the grace and mercy and unconditional love God has for us (and the whole world), then we can release all of our worries and fears and fully trust Him to work His plan in our lives. That is true contentment, and I am going to sleep tonight feeling very content. I hope you can, too.
Lastly, I am thankful for a healthy body that was able to do all of these things today. Clarity of mind, physical strength and good health are far too often taken for granted. I’ve watched loved ones suffer without one or more of these. I’ve suffered without physical strength and good health. When I lay down to go to sleep, it will be with a tired body that will know it’s a good tired because it was used in love and service to my family and community.
Tomorrow is another day, and I will look for the hidden blessings along the path God has willed for my life. I pray the same for you. Until then, here’s to being thankful for one of life’s sweetest, richest blessings…rest. Ahh.