Thursday, January 13, 2022

Weekly Gratitude Journal and My One Word for 2022

“ARISE [from the depression and prostration in which circumstances have kept you–rise to a new life]! Shine (be radiant with the glory of the Lord), for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you!” ‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭60:1‬ ‭AMPC‬‬

 I’m a big fan of choosing one word as a spiritual focus for the year and have been doing so since I first heard of the concept in 2011. As each new year approaches, I pray and ask God to show me what word He has for me. Sometimes I know the word months in advance. This year it wasn’t until New Year’s Eve that I knew that my word for 2022 was to be ARISE. As I’ve mentioned here, 2021 brought a lot of changes in our family. Our oldest granddaughter turned 18, graduated, and is now in the adulting stage of life. Her brother is 17 and right at her heels. These changes were expected. But what I didn’t expect was the cross country moves of our two youngest daughters and their families and missing out on being near as the littlest grandchildren, ages seven, four, two and one, are growing up. It’s not how I pictured my life being and I struggled all year mourning about it. It’s time for me to ARISE. 

@ediewadsworth wrote on her Instagram account recently “Choose to accept the life you have and from a place of gratitude and love change what needs changing…right now, today, you are creating with your thoughts, feelings, words and actions the life you will have.” 

And so, I am choosing to accept my new normal and arise from mourning over what I cannot change and choose to change what I can. I'm asking God to show me His will, ways and purposes in all of this as I do believe that God promises in Romans 8:28 that all things are working together for my good. Meanwhile, I've been quiet on social media since mid-December. I wanted to enjoy time with my grandkids before their move, then came the holidays, then came a lingering bout of some sort of awful non-covid type flu that my husband and I took turns with and then our oldest granddaughter came to see us for a week before her internship at the International House of Prayer in Kansas City begins this week. 

I decided that to catch up here with my gratitude journaling, I'll finish out my 2021 list on here today, and post the beginnings of my 2022 gratitude journal next week. And, perhaps, Lord willing, I'll do a bit more writing in the new year.

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 journal.
(and capturing some of my blessings via my camera or iPhone)

-God's help with an overwhelming to-do list
-encouraging texts from a friend
-God's reminder that I am known and understood by Him
-a call from my youngest girl and a FaceTime call from my middle girl 

-sweet moments with my grands before they move to Florida
-God showing me clearly how to bless the ladies of our church
-a beautiful evening at our Christmas tea

-You are the God Who Speaks
-a good talk with my oldest granddaughter
-help from a friend

-morning coffee after a very short sleep (we got a new puppy!)

-God's amazing provision for our church
-taking the dog out to go to the bathroom and seeing the bright, almost full moon shining through an opening in the cloudy sky

-our middle daughter and son-in-law's 21st anniversary!
-the new puppy slept better!
-laughing together about the puppy's antics
-going to our grandson's adorable preschool Christmas program

-the way our youngest granddaughter likes to cup Papa's face in her hands
-God's provision to buy tickets to go to Florida for our youngest granddaughter's upcoming birthday

-listening to Handel's Messiah while baking
-texts with my siblings
-texts with my daughter's sweet MIL
-my husband and his dog, Sal


-beautiful worship and a profound word to meditate on
-a Christmas gathering with our kids and grandkids (the one's still nearby that is)

-fun time with our two middle granddaughters

-a friend's encouragement to keep moving forward
-a fun evening with our growth group

-the shortest day of the year, (this means the days will start to stay light longer!)
-Christmas cards finally done!
-Facetime calls with my grandkids

-having friends over for breakfast
-our puppy is super calm (except about riding in the car)
-a hot tea from my guy

-good news about our granddaughter's internship
-a walk around the lake
-dinner at a favorite Mexican restaurant
-snuggling together and watching, "Going My Way"

-homemade cinnamon cranberry bread toasted and smeared with marmalade
-taking the dog on a walk around the park together
-baking more bread to give away

-thank You, God for sending Jesus!
-Facetime calls from our South Carolina kids
-our grandkids enjoying playing with our puppy
-dinner and games with our youngest daughter's family and her in-laws

-Christmas brunch and communion with our church family
-putting way the Christmas decor and decluttering
-relaxing together afterwards

-our granddaughter got accepted into the internship
-facetiming our seven year old grandson who showed us he put together the radio kit we bought him for Christmas
-a new teapot

-free online Bible study tools
-Trader Joe's roses
-God's provision and guidance

-our middle daughter checking on us
-God's provision for us
-a negative covid test

-a sweet morning with the Lord
-my beautiful new book about Maine
-additions to our church family

-the view of the backyard, trees and sky out our bedroom window
-Edie Wadsworth's words that brought me full circle back to something God had spoken to me
-Lamentations 3
-texting with my Visionary Leadership Team
-sweet days with our four and two year old grands before their big move to Florida

-watching New Year's Eve fireworks out the window with my grandson

still following,


  1. What a great word and scripture, Elizabeth! The second part, shine, really spoke to me. My husband got me a WillowTree figurine, Shine, for Christmas. It's not my "one word" but it's getting my attention. Family transitions are the hardest, aren't they? You've been in my prayers. Wishing you all JOY in 2022. Happy New Year!

    1. Thank you so much, June. Your encouragement and prayers mean the world to me.

  2. Your word is perfect for this year. It speaks to all of us no matter what our circumstances. Praying for you through the transitions, dear friend. Love the photos and news about your kids and grands.


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