Thankfulness, thru Jesus' lens, sees much to rejoice in that the world would cast aside...pain, hurt, betrayal, sickness...that lives arm-in-arm with the "good stuff". It is virtually impossible to sift thru life and separate the pain and the praise because, in God's economy, there is much to rejoice in either way.
With all that being said, here is a list of things I am thankful for that includes pain and heartache intertwined with those things that seem naturally praise-worthy...
* For a husband who loves the Lord and loves his family and took such great care of me during my recovery from surgery
* For 5 amazing kids who pulled together and kept the ship afloat while I was knocked down and who fill my every day with more joy than a heart can hold
* For the opportunity to practice forgiveness and blessing those who persecute me during a very difficult time
* For shoulder surgery which not only repaired a damaged shoulder, but provided me a reason to be tucked away in a recliner during a time of emotional pain and healing where Papa ministered to me in His most tender way
* For the excitement in my boy's eyes when he signed to play baseball at a D1 school for a coach and a school with a wonderful reputation
* For the opportunity to gather together with 34 of my most special friends for a women's retreat and see chains literally fall to the floor before our very eyes
* For a church family who loves us and encourages us on a daily basis
* For the lines of communication that I have with my children that allow us to discuss the good things and the painful things that life choices bring our way
* For an extended family that loves and encourages us in real and tangible ways
* For the pruning away of habits or attitudes that will hinder intimacy with Jesus
* For hope that is based not on an elected official or sound economic times, but a sovereign Savior who has a plan
My list could go on as surely as the moments each new breath brings, but in the interest of time and space I will stop here. I pray the Lord will always gives me eyes to see my experiences thru a thankful lens even if it takes a few gentle nudges on His part.
Thank You, Lord, for ALL of it, for in ALL things I give thanks!!!