"Thank you for our chicken. Thank you for our corn. Thank you for our beans. Thank you for our salt. Thank you for our Grand-moms. Thank you for Mommy. Thank you for our brother. Thank you for Daddy. Thank you for my sister. Thank you for me. Amen."
My two year old daughter has already begun to practice that which I've only just begun: Naming the things for which I am thankful.
Letting the grumbles grow is easy. But it crushes.
Naming the blessings is something I'm learning to do more. When I do, my spirit soars.
It doesn't take away the messy house, the disobedient children, or the challenging circumstances. But it replaces my thoughts with those that turn me toward God. Isn't it about Him anyway? If I want to make more of Jesus, and less of me, shouldn't I dwell on the gifts from His hand? For in dwelling on His gifts I really dwell on Him.
My mother-in-law sent me the book, One Thousand Gifts this summer. I had given it to her for Christmas last year; she read it and then passed it on to me. I learned much reading what Ann Voskamp had to share. This act of naming gifts is a practice she speaks of, and it made such an impact in her own life.
I love the way she puts it,
So, not only I am seeking to make a list in my heart, but I'm starting to write a list, a list of my blessings. I want to return thanks, not grumbles, in the midst of my day. I long for my heart to shout out thanks to God.
He is most gracious and if I fail to lift my heart up in thanks I fail to recognize Him for who He is.
"All your works shall give thanks to you, O LORD, and all your saints shall bless you! They shall speak of the glory of your kingdom and tell of your power, to make known to the children of man your mighty deeds, and the glorious splendor your kingdom."
Oh, that today my heart would rise up in thanks and bless the Lord!
To see a list of other posts in this series go here.
Yesterday was a full day, and it wasn't until after writing this post this morning that I saw on Ann Voskamp's blog the trailer for the new One Thousand Gifts DVD study. If you have a few minutes, go on over, watch the trailer, and when you have time, settle in and watch the first session. I know you'll be blessed.*