Monday, November 2, 2009

The Month of Thankfulness

I have had a hard year. Sometimes when I think about everything we have been through, it is hard not to get into the depressed, "why me?" mode of thinking. I was having an especially down day last week. We were gearing up to go to Missoula to hear if Jack needed surgery. I desperately didn't want Jack to go through anything painful. He has already been through so much. I was feeling down. I was going through my blog list and read a post from my friend, Lindsay. All I can say is, the post really struck me and got me thinking about all the good things (even if small) that I can be thankful for. In fact, if I think back on this past year, I can see many good things that have happened, even if this year will go down as the hardest and most painful year yet.

Here is the post:

A New Leaf
My friend Julie is a wise one. On Sunday, she told me about this little journal she keeps. It's not a journal to process feelings and emotions. Many of us have those, and they certainly have their place. I love spilling my guts out in a journal, because that means that I don't dump absolutely everything on people (because, honestly, who wants to hear that?!!?). But her journal is different. It's simply a place where she writes down of all the blessings God brings her way. She and her husband have taken significant financial cuts to work at our church; yet, checks, cash, gift cards, and invitations for dinner out come at just the right time... and often. God is good. And Julie is quick to give credit where credit is due.

We all have things to complain about. Life's hard. And bad things happen. And frustrations build upon frustrations. And people hurt you. And ministry is hard. And times are tough. And there is never enough money. And never enough time. The list could go on and on.

But I'm tired of letting my emotions and feelings rule my life. I'm sick of having this dark cloud hang over my head. I definitely want my life to be marked by gratitude and joy, not discontent and fear. It's not natural or easy. But I'm SO over this slump. And just as we all have tough things to deal with, we all have A LOT of blessings. I don't want to forget all of the little things that add up to much. Much more than I deserve or need. p.s. I get a whole lot of what I want too, and I need to recognize it and be thankful.

So, I'm going to copy my friend Julie. Starting this week, I'm going to write down my blessings, even if it's just 10/24/09: $50 Check from my grandpa. That way, I can look back and see everything God provided and realize how incredibly GOOD He is. Because oh, oh, oh... HE IS GOOD!

This post inspired me, so I am also starting a thankfulness journal and I am designating this as my "month of thankfulness". And yes, it coincides with Thanksgiving... which is either cheesy or a perfect reminder for me.

Go ahead and allow yourself to be thankful, even when life is hard and messy.
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Julie said...

What a great post Jessi! It has definitely been such a hard year for you guys, more than anyone can know but you! I used to write down five things every day but I've gotten out of the habit...need to get back into it. You should do a post with some of the ones that land in your journal! :) Can't wait to see you Wednesday!

Barbara said...

I think you are the embodiment of grace.