A young mama in our church is in the hospital tonight fighting for her life. She's had two mitral valve replacements. Following the second surgery she was in a coma and the outlook was grim. But God did a miracle and she is now cognitive and alert, talking and walking and eating. However, now she is experiencing inoperable leaking around the valve and she is in congestive heart failure.
This morning a dear friend of ours, a gifted Bible teacher, spoke at our church on the topic of Jesus saying, "I Am the resurrection and the life". The disciples, the family and friends of Mary and Martha, and many in the city saw the proof of His claim when He raised Lazarus from the dead. When I followed along in my own Bible as our friend read the scriptures I noted that I have written in the margin of my Bible by John 11:41, "Eucharisto, thanksgiving, always precedes the miracle", a quote from Ann Voskamp's book, One Thousand Gifts.
I got to thinking about Jesus thanking His Father for listening to Him. Then I got to thinking about the fact that the Father loves me, loves us, just as He loves the Jesus. In the prayer of Jesus, (John 17 :23), He says, "You have loved them even as You have loved Me". So, as I'm praying for this young mama tonight, maybe I need to remember that, just as He did His Son, my Father hears me, He always hears me and listens to me. Maybe I need to stop asking long enough to thank Him. Thanksgiving always precedes the miracle.
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)
-God is my refuge and my strength
-salmon given to us by a friend, and cooked on the grill
-a piece of whole grain toast smeared with goat cheese and topped with homemade raspberry jam for breakfast
-the hub's coming home early and us getting away for a late lunch and a trip to the lilac gardens
-comfy new shoes
(I think they are cute as well as comfy.
One daughter agrees with me, and two daughters think they look like "old lady shoes". haha!)
-a couple of hours with just me and my youngest grandson
-finishing another project for my daughter's wedding
-lunch with a friend that I haven't visited with in too long
-counseling and praying with others
-coming home after a full afternoon and evening of ministry and knowing that tomorrow is the hub's day off!
-a rainy day, staying home together, being lazy and watching a good movie
-dinner with friends
-getting called away from our evening with friends to go up to the hospital,
but first, us all gathering in a circle and praying together,
praying at the hospital with the brave young mama and her family,
and noticing that the best view overlooking the whole city is from her hospital room
-going shopping with my daughter afterwards for some new clothes for her rehearsal dinner and honeymoon
-getting my housecleaning chores and my walk done when I got home in inspite of a day of fun!
-our dear friends ministering at our church today
-taking them to a Jordanian restaurant for lunch afterwards and they thought it was so fun and loved the food
-God hears and listens to our prayers