Some things in life are instinctual - breathing, scratching an itch, protecting something you love.
Some things are passed down - eye color, a pout-y bottom lip, the hand gestures when talking.
Some things are powered only by an almighty God - sacrificial love, grace in the midst of adversity, and perseverance in faith. Of course, ultimately, all these things come from God.
My list of thankfulness grows each day and includes things from each area and for them, to God be the glory!
As I continue in this journey with this sweet little bundle of baby, I find myself having ups and downs. Days pass and it is hard when you cannot get out and do the things you need to do but you cope. Following a feeding schedule that leaves room for only small increments of sleep brings on weariness but you push on. Frustration with a system that really brings no answers gnaws at your exhausted patience but you keeping moving forward. And then one day you are too shut off, too tired, too frustrated...what then???
But God so loved, is so long-suffering, so full of mercy and grace that He imparts, to those who believe, the best - His Son Jesus. For such a sinner that thumbed her nose and rebelled with an embarrassing zeal for self, He took on the just wrath that was deservedly mine. I cannot stop counting all the ways God has pulled me from the murky depths and still patiently loves and works in my mind that strays so easily, in my heart that still tries to move self into the number one position, in my mouth that spews cutting words, and in my actions that betray my love for Him. I am brought to my knees. Thank you Lord!
Too often as of late, I have heard, "Thank you for what you are doing. It is a great work." I cringe every time and my tongue gets tangled spitting out a response. My initial reaction always wants to say, "Ha! If you only knew my self-serving heart that is always seeking to protect me," but I lasso it in and try to point to the truth behind the good. Ignore the woman behind the curtain, she is much like the Wizard of Oz - a hyped-up sham. Problem is that I do not have a fancy system of smoke and mirrors for hiding myself. I still get caught in instances where I try to hide, get nervous and trip myself up so that I look like an utter buffoon, or I pull off something that is okay and my pride inflates only to be popped with the slightest source of feeling rejection. Argh! Why??? If I do anything "good" it is powered by God alone. For this I am grateful and I hope I can communicate that in every situation and Christ continues to expose the woman trying to hide behind the curtain.
One area God has been very gracious to me, despite my sinfulness, is with family - those born in physically and those born in spiritually. Like the Wizard of Oz, I really have nothing to offer except to point to what has been there all along - God. Let that be the desire of my heart each day especially with my family.
Now for a thankfulness that I can share more tangibly. Here is a link to a story about someone I love dearly that God has answered many prayers for: The Tank Chair
Happy Thanksgiving to you all! And I pray that you seek God first.