Thanks is a word that can never be overused. I have been reading a book called One Thousand Gifts, which has been reiterating the importance of being aware of your blessings. How many things do I overlook in a day? Blinded by my worry or anger of what I have not been blessed with, its easy to forget or ignore the countless gifts around you. Like starting that I live in America. How often do I overlook that simple but huge blessing? Or that I have an education. Or a roof over my head. How many times do I drive by blooming flowers and sun-kissed palm trees and not give thanks that I live in a beautiful place? Or that I have a car to drive by the beauty in?
A grateful heart is made through diligent training. Being a believer, I feel that I am blessed with an understanding that there is no point of hitting rock bottom. I have no fear that life will ever be so unbearable that I have nothing to be grateful for. You can take all my blessings from me, but as long as there is breath on my lips, my tongue can give thanks. Easy to say, much harder to do.
The hardest thing I have had to face in my short life is the pain of Fiona's diagnosis, as it is probably apperant since I often bring up how it effects me. It did not come naturally to thank God through out that time in my life. It was intentional, through gritted teeth and a tearing heart. I wish I could say that my faith in Him is that strong that trusting His plan saved me from the pain of losing a life dreamed. Through burning tears, I asked Him why and he gently responded, " Its my plan". My breaking heart asked Him to fix her, and He gently told me "She's perfect how I made her". It wasn't until I came to the place where I said no matter what happens, I will be okay, that peace was found. I allowed every scenario to torment my mind. If she died in my womb, I would be okay. If she died in my arms, I would be okay. If she was deformed, I would be okay. If she was ugly, I would be okay. If she was deaf, I would be okay. If she was blind, I would be okay. If she never walked, I would be okay. I started to train my heart to be thankful for whatever I was given. If she died in my womb, I would be thankful for the chance to carry her. If she died in my arms, I would be thankful for the chance to see her. And in any other less-then-perfect scenario, I could always be thankful that she was alive. It was this change in thought pattern that took a tragedy and turned it into hope.
I am thankful that Fiona is alive. I am thankful that she is beautiful. I am thankful that every night I get to hold her, smell her, kiss her and in return receive her adoration back. I am thankful for three thriving kids. I am thankful for bo-boos to kiss, nightmares to calm, and messes to clean- because they mean that I have my kids to enjoy.
I am thankful for bad things happening to "good" people. That we are told to rejoice in our sufferings because they will bring us wisdom. For I know the plans that I have for you. Plans to prosper you and not harm you. I am thankful that I cannot control everything in my life, surprises is what gives life depth.
To my three kids that one day will hopefully read all of this, happiness is fleeting, but the secret to contentment is a grateful heart. Life could always be bigger, better, richer, happier and that kind of thinking is what will lead you to be incomplete. Life is a blessing in itself, a undeserved gift. To grasp that concept is to view your one precious life through the eyes of the richest man on earth.
If you didn't catch it in the last post, Fiona was standing on the plane seat looking out the window. She regularly gets her self up to reach things at her height, and is loving her kitchen that Papa got her for Christmas.
As if my blessings aren't already endless, I have a new camera to be thankful for. I am thankful that my dad and my husband both understand my passion for photography and that this time is fleeting and we will never get these years back once they are gone. Not much in life do I find worth the money, but my kids childhood memories are truly priceless to me. Thanks to my dad and husband for paying the price tag on the camera that is unfortunately not price-less.
What are you thankful for today?