My calendar says I don’t have to be thankful til Thursday, but I guess I’m feeling a little ahead of the times. Or the holiday, in this case. Canadians were thankful in October, so by their standards I’m behind the times. I suppose I’m just on my own time.
For me, thankfulness didn’t arrive just today. I’ve been feeling quite blessed lately, and thankfulness often seems to accompany that. It’s not just the big things I’ve been appreciating, and it’s not just the little things either. There’s all sorts of big and little and medium things that are all worth being thankful for, and although I know there’s a lot I should be thankful for that I don’t always do a good job of, I am learning.
There are some repeats that show up on my list of things I’m thankful for every year. God, and the gift of his son Jesus, who’s sacrifice covers all my sin, is kind of a biggy. The biggest, really. And it’s cliche, and people think you don’t mean it when you say you’re thankful for God, but I think it’s more true for me than ever this year. He has taught me so much in the past year, and it is only through his grace that I continue to muddle through each day and on to the next. Lately I’ve been noticing him so much more than I have at other times, and the big and small ways in which he’s at work. My mind has been blown by the things he is doing, and I am so, so thankful that he is opening my eyes to it.
Redemption is one of the biggest things I’ve been noticing. Because this life is messy, and things get broken and screwed up, but God is bigger than the broken. He is able to, and has been, renewing things I had thought were lost. So for redemption, renewal, and repair, I am oh-so-thankful.
Family shows up on my list each year too. It doesn’t make it any less true, and if anything, with the changes my family has undergone with marriages and births in the past few years, it makes it more true that I can honestly put it on my list each year. There are 2 new people in my family since last Thanksgiving, a nephew and a niece, and they already add so much to our family. Things will continue to change in my family in the coming years, but I am confident that I will still be able to genuinely put it on my list year after year. For that confidence alone there is thankfulness, because I know many do not have that.
Friends keep making my list, too. Since last Thanksgiving I think I have learned a ton about friendship, so yet again I find myself saying that it feels more true this year than in years past. Family I’m stuck with, but friends–I am not necessarily stuck with them, and they are not necessarily stuck with me, so the ones that have stuck with me are something to be thankful for. Old friendships that have gotten better, new friendships that hold promise of years to come, and all the “middle-aged” ones that have so much good going on–I am so very, very thankful. Being a friend and having friends is not always an easy thing, and I am grateful that there are those that have seen fit to stick around even when I mess up terribly.
Those are the big ones, I suppose. I could add so many more to this list though. Kuyper College, for one. The academics are good, sure, but more than that I have found incredible community there. I have found fun, and acceptance, and laughter, and love, and GOD through the people there. I have been given many opportunities that I would not have had elsewhere, and I am so, so thankful for my time there.
There’s a lot of things that are perhaps slightly less dramatic, but I am no less thankful for them. Music, and the way it adds so much to my life. My car. Socks. Warm blankets. (Especially important seeing as we still haven’t turned the heat on in our apartment.)
Books. Movies. Ice cream. Cell phones. Hair. Laptops. Lotion. Indoor plumbing. Sunshine. Bacon. Color. Hope. Coffee.
WORDS. I LOVE WORDS. Seriously. I don’t know where I’d be if I hadn’t discovered my love of words.
This post could go on for an incredibly long time, but I’ll leave it at that for now. Moral of the story: I’m feeling pretty thankful these days, and not just because on Thursday I’m supposed to.
Til next time…