Sunday, May 6, 2012

Eucharisteo & Me

Have you ever heard of the book 1000 Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where you Are by Ann Voskamp?
It is seriously one of the most encouraging and uplifting books that I have ever read. It's about her life being a mom of six, married to a farmer, and her process to see beauty in the every day, giving thanks. It's amazing. I actually read it a little while ago and one of the things that she does is keep notebooks around the house and whenever she is thankful for something she writes down the thing she is thankful for, even the hard things that you might complain about, when it's hard to see that beauty in life. She has a blog, too, that is simple amazing and I'm not sure why I don't read it more. (Adding it to my reader, now!)

There have been a culmination of small events lately where I have been caught in my own sin where I have realized my heart is ungrateful.

The largest one is that BOTH of our vehicles currently have NO air conditioning. Let me remind you that we live in South Carolina where we just had one of the most mild winters ever and it has already been a steady 95 degrees. Hart and I have recently made some decisions about what we are going to do about our cars, but in the mean time, I have been "suffering" when I'm driving around town.

In the Bible there is a man name Jonah and most people know him due to the fact that he was sent to Ninevah by God to speak to them, but decided he didn't want to do God's will and ran the other direction, which landed him deep in the sea ready to die, when God sent a large fish to swallow him up and spit him out on dry land. Towards the end of the story, Jonah is sitting on a hill AFTER he has done what God has asked looking over the city of Ninevah and God appoints a vine to grow up and over Jonah to provide shade for him in the blazin' heat to save him from his discomfort, but then, God causes the vine to shrivel up and Jonah is hot and faint and he rather dramatically says "It is better for me to DIE than to live." And then God says something along the lines of "Is it really good for you to be angry for the plant? and Jonah responds, "Yes, I am angry about the plant, angry enough to die." God goes on to say, basically, that the plant was given by God's hand and it went away when God wanted it to go away.

Most people don't focus on that part of the story, but Jonah's response is usually how I respond when I'm upset that God hasn't changed my circumstances, especially financially, for the better.

Eucharisteo is the Greek word for being thankful, feeling grateful, to give thanks.

I don't want to respond like Jonah. I want my heart to be grateful for the things in my life, even when they aren't exactly how I would prefer. Even when I'm hot and tired. I want to give thanks even in the tough times.

After I read the book, I really did try to write down my thanks, but it wasn't but a couple weeks and I stopped and then a couple months later, I discovered my journal underneath a chair with dust all over it. Maybe, just maybe, a reflection of my heart deep inside, too.

When I started this blog, it wasn't my intention to separate my creative side from the rest of me, but somehow it kind of happened. I realized that my model of blogging was coming from what I was reading, too. It isn't bad, but it isn't me either. For me, my creative side has come straight from my Creator and for me creating IS a spiritual act of worship. I create things to bring God glory. I create to show the beauty of my Creator. It's deep inside of who I am and I can't separate who I am anymore, that's why yesterday I put a verse right in the beginning of the post. Something that I plan to do more often, because doing so made me be in God's Word right in the middle of even creating a post about one mighty cute book bag!

In an effort to hold myself accountable, once again, I'm picking up my pen, but instead of sharing most of my spiritual stuff on my family blog, I want to share some here, too. I hope that reading what I am thankful for, you will give thanks too. We are so blessed. Every day.

I'm thankful for....

1. A husband that is doing the dishes as I type this
2. my sister in law's amazing voice that lifts me up when I'm cleaning the house
3. a napping toddler
4. a 4 year old that wanted to sit by me playing duck, duck, goose at church
5. finger painting with 4's and 5's making mother's day cards
6. our fire inspection letter arriving in the mail from DSS a whole month before I expected
7. hearing my husband play the violin incredibly well during the music at church
8. eating burritos with friends for cinco de mayo
9. for a storm that rolled through bringing rain and cool air from the heat
10. a long to-do list that rarely gets things checked off

"Do all things without grumbling or questioning, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life..."
Philippians 2:14