Archive | 6:00 pm

I took the plunge…

6 Jan

 

AND

Yes, enough.

6 Jan

At our church’s Christmas service two weeks ago, I couldn’t concentrate. I had been listening to Christmas hymns, reading the Christmas story, researching Jesus’ genealogy, and preparing my heart for what I expected to be a beautiful and captivating service. And while the service was that, my heart was MIA. I couldn’t even focus on the truth we were celebrating.

Instead, I was brimming with ingratitude. It took me a little while to recognize it as such. At first, I just felt unhappy. I wished my outfit was cuter, and wondered how much other women spend on their clothes. I wished I had only put things on my Christmas list that I really wanted, since I received other things. I wished for the life of a stay-at-home mom who didn’t have to go to work everyday. I wished for a body that was naturally thinner. I wished for longer, prettier hair. I wished to be more outgoing, to have more friends, to be more encouraging.

As the service went on, I grew sick with discontent, like I had been reading in a car winding down the road for hours.

I tried to turn my thoughts back to God. Back to Jesus. He’s human! Celebrate!

But even on Christmas, I couldn’t forget self.

“His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.” Everything I need for life and godliness.¬†I said it wasn’t enough, much like Eve in the garden who ignored every blessing to focus on the one thing withheld.

Ingratitude chokes the heart.

Since that morning, this knowledge has seeped into the pages of my life, revealing ingratitude written with invisible ink. Putting all struggles in their proper context, like beams of light through cobwebs of issues I thought had been put to rest.

That’s why…

Imagining God as my parent or husband, delighted in having spent hours upon hours picking out the perfect gift for me. Imagining me scoffing, stomping, and demanding more.

Isn’t that what I’ve been doing? Hasn’t God¬†perfectly and lovingly hand-picked every circumstance, aspect, and facet of my life?

My throat swells when I think of how I’ve shunned Him and His blessings. How I’ve said No, not enough.

But Grace…

All is not lost. He does not withdraw His blessings from the ungrateful recipient. This God pours out more, so that we might know the truth of Who He is and who we are.

More… always more.

Gratefulness for repentance spills over into watercolor sunsets, fast runs on warm evenings, personality quirks, quiet moments to read, unique tastes, and Jesus, human and humble.

“The meek shall obtain fresh joy in the LORD…”

…by saying Yes, enough.

…by trustfully accepting their divine appointment in life.

…by accepting their reality as God’s deliberate and loving gift.

Ingratitude makes us miss the gift.

God has seen my lifelong ungratefulness. He stayed. He drew closer. He gave more grace. And now I see it too.

So this is what I want to spend the rest of my life doing – Finding new ways to thank Him. New things to praise Him for. New blessings to pass on to others.

………………………………..

If you want more thoughts on thanksgiving, I highly recommend reading One Thousands Gifts by Ann Voskamp, who influenced many of my thoughts above.