23 August 2009

Love Behind the Blessings


(Inspiration and logo from Holy Experience)

Being thankful is not telling God you appreciate the fact that your life is not in shambles. If that is the basis of your gratitude, you are on slippery ground.
Every day of your life you face the possibility that a blessing in your life
may be taken away.
But blessings are only signs of God's love.
The real blessing, of course, is the love itself.
Whenever we get too attached to the sign,
we lose our grasp on the God who gave it to us.
Churches are filled with widows who can explain this to you.
We are not ultimately grateful that we are still holding our blessings.
We are grateful
that we are held by God
even when the blessings are slipping through our fingers.

~ Craig Barnes

Thank You, Father, for the signs of Your love. You know that we need them and You delight in giving them. I offer this Sabbath worship of gratitude... yes, even for the blessings that may only be mine for a moment... because I am so grateful for Your love above all else. Even if every one were to slip from my fingers, I still have infinite reasons to love You and be thankful... I am ever a debtor to Grace.


(on my fridge)

The simple, deep joy
of the simple and deep love
that my seven year old son colored upon a bare page
of him and his mommy together.


Walking down to the kitchen one morning and
catching a glimpse through the window
of my twelve year old doing her own laundry
on her own initiative. A young lady is becoming
a young woman right before my eyes.


(Ah...the pictures we take for tax deduction purposes...)

God's providential timing.
Within in a week of returning home
with some of Grandma's furniture passed on to us,
I receive an email from my church
about an Indonesian family who just moved to our town
and has nothing with them and is particularly in need of furniture.
So, I pass along the chair that I can now spare,
saying good-bye to a sentimental part of my past,
along with a few other things.
God takes one need and blesses many with the opportunity to give.


Hearing the buzz of my beater
as my twelve year old daughter teaches her ten year old brother
how to make home-made cookies.
I rejoice in seeing her prayer being answered
of asking the Lord to give her greater love and patience
towards her (annoying!) brothers.
Strings of fellowship are tied between siblings.
My heart soars.


Proud younger son of his great catch
as a friend takes father and children fishing.
Memories with Daddy
that last a lifetime.


(That's a pool noodle in his hand)

"Come and see, Mommy!..."
Capturing the blurry bodies of my children
as they demonstrate the obstacle course they set up together in our yard.
Pure joy to see them play together,
creatively making fun with what is at hand,
while enjoying fresh air.
Why not? I run the course, too,
and fill my lungs with laughter.

The more I count these blessings, the more I realize that they really are not the product of my own efforts. They are truly gifts of grace from God above. It's incredible to open my eyes to them week after week. And humbling. That I should be graced with such wonders? Me... whose heart is weak and black, yet covered with much mercy. How great is Your unfailing love, Lord God of all!

Join the joy of our journey here. Participate in the growing gratitude community here.


1 comment:

deb said...

simply beautiful