It's bitter cold outside, but inside the fire is cozy warm.
The Christmas tree lights are on and here and there around the house candle light flickers.
Christmas music is playing in the background.
The hubs is sitting here reading, while I type away.
The gratitude flows easily in these moments,
but there have been other Christmases when it hasn't been so easy.
Some of you are in a season of heartache,
of financial worries,
of the first holiday without a loved one...
If you feel comfortable to do so, leave a comment if this is a hard season for you.
I'd like to pray for you.
I've been there, and I know that just knowing someone else is praying is a comfort.
And friend, just keep putting one foot in front of the other,
and keep on walking.
Know that you will walk right on out of this valley one day.
This season of the hard eucharisteo* won't last forever.
*(to be grateful, feel thankful, give thanks)
In 2012 I followed the prompts in Ann Voskamp's Joy Dare in counting my thanks.
In 2013 I'm going back to the way I did it in the beginning,
just noticing and recording the many extraordinary blessings in my ordinary life.
And so I continue to count my thanks
piling up gratitude day by day
in my little black journal.
(and capturing some of them via my camera or iPhone)
-a good report on a medical test for a pre-cancerous condition...
no reoccurrence and no new problems!
-all is well on our daughter's 12 week check up on her miracle pregnancy
-a text with a photo of the ultrasound of our grand baby
-devotions by the fireplace
-getting our Christmas tree!
-fun at our church's annual ladies' Christmas dinner and gift exchange
-very upsetting news for a family in the church that ended up to not be true!
-a safe trip to Medford to be with my sister while my brother-in-law had cancer surgery
-a good report...the cancer appears to have been contained and completely removed
-my brothers and sisters and nieces and nephews
-my brother in law walking around the hallway when we got back to the hospital this morning
-lunch with my sister before heading back home
-a beautiful sunset
-a safe drive home
-awesome prayer and worship at church tonight
-waking up to snow
-visiting with some pastor's wives at our luncheon meeting today
-the laughter at our church's Homebuilders group Christmas party
-a phone call from my big brother
-a cheery fire
-flannel sheets on a cold night
-our faithful teachers, worship team members, elders and other volunteers at church
-lunch with a group of the young adults after church
-our two youngest granddaughters spending the night at our house
See how to enter my giveaway for this beautiful Ghanaian Market Basket by clicking on the photo.
Join the community of gratitude gatherers here...