There's a patch of woods near my house that used to be someone's property back in the day, but it's now city owned. Yesterday, I put on my rubber boots and tromped through there looking for these salmon colored blossoms in the midst of the mess and tangle of blackberry vines, english ivy and evergreen branches. Someone planted that flowering quince at one time, and last year I happened upon it. This year I purposely went looking for it.
Thanksgiving, gratitude, is a lot like my encounter with that flowering quince. Sometimes you just "happen upon it". Something happens that's an obvious gift from God, an obvious answer to prayer, an obvious intervention in your life, and the words "Thank God!" spring out of your lips almost unconsciously. But often, our blessings are hidden in the middle of a tangled up mess. That's when you have to make a deliberate choice to go out looking for them, and when you find them you make a deliberate choice to be thankful, right there in the middle of the mess.
Since 2009 I've been counting my blessings thanks to the prompting of Ann Voskamp.
I continue to count my thanks
piling up gratitude day by day
in my little green journal.
(and capturing some of my blessings via my camera or iPhone)
-a beautiful "false spring" day
-taking our granddaughter bike riding on the path by the Columbia River
(her 6th birthday was the day before so her present was a sleepover and spending President's Day with us with her getting to choose what we did)
-going to Ft. Vancouver
-lunch at Red Robin
-our youngest granddaughter standing in the window watching for us when we brought big sister home
-another beautiful spring like day
-the trees are blooming!
- a wonderful dinner and evening with my daughter's future in-laws
-beginning the She Reads Truth Lent devotional-
(I'm so thankful for reconciliation with Father God through Jesus!)
-a day spent at home cooking and getting ready for company
-friends gathered round our table
-trusting God with things I don't know how to handle
-God bringing his order to my day
-a great walk 2x around the local fitness trail
-tea and conversation with a sweet friend from church
-dinner with the two oldest grandkids
-them wanting to stay at church for prayer meeting
-a Friday "date day" drive to the coast
-watching a favorite old movie together when we got home
-foraging some flowering quince from the woods
-having our youngest grandson at our house for a few hours
-the way God works things out if we take our hands off and trust Him
-God working in lives
-lunch with friends
-oldest grandson just calling me to talk