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Wednesday, November 27, 2013

A Life Without Blinders

What does thankful that look like? I wish I knew how to live more thankfully. My attempts to BE thankful, to express the idea-- they don’t feel nearly sufficient for what I have been given. I suppose only God has the strength to help me. And I have been told that knowing God is being able to SEE all of the blessings.  I have to peel off the blinders. Accept what he gives me with arms opened, head up.

So this Thanksgiving I am thinking about how to live a more thankful life.

Is thankful writing down a bunch of things that I’m grateful for? The golden sky beckoning me to come out and play. My desire to run, to dance, to sing in my 43-year-old body. My three young kids alive and rosy-cheeked this morning, my husband home from work and ready to celebrate a holiday, the beautiful music in the background, the chatter of family over a game of Sorry. The warm cranberry oatmeal I’m making. The Ipad holding the interest of our overstimulated, challenged child so that there is peace... Peace is so good. Good enough to stop what I am doing and come write about it.

Is thankful saying thank-you to the people who have made my life meaningful? Thank you to my parents for spending challenging days, months, years carefully accompanying me to adulthood. They never forget to tell me how much they love me. And sisters. They are always there, forgiving me and loving me, even when they don’t understand me. Thank-you to my husband for grace... despite my moods, my sadness, my intense focus at times to help our son who struggles. My husband has the courage to hold me and embrace with me when I am at my lowest point. He doesn’t let me fall. I never knew this big of love existed.  Thank-you to my church family for caring for my family-- for openly talking with me about my fears and my ideas relating to faith.  And still loving me. Thank-you to the moms who hug me and share their struggles. Or the moms who pick up the phone and call me. I know I am not alone.

Or is thankful an action? Cooking and sharing a meal. Giving away my money. Embracing someone who is in pain. Loving someone who I think I can’t possibly even like. Finding time to organize other people to give away goodness. Connecting with people-- in real life. Letting someone else go first.

Now that I think of it, thankful living could be found in the silence. Sitting still. Hearing the piano that is now playing with little fingers-- miraculously calming his mind. Thankful living could be holding my tongue, listening to an idea-- one I disagree with. Listening and seeing all that God has given me. Breathing it in. Praying for the blinders to come off.

I pray that my life and yours will be a great thanksgiving-- not just on Thanksgiving day, but every day of our lives.