Thursday, November 25, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 25

Day 25
Happy Thanksgiving!
Today I am thankful for a cozy, warm bed to crawl into after a day of eating and relaxing with family.  I think food is something we so easily take for granted, as well as a warm, comfortable place to sleep.  Thank you Lord for your provision of both, for the abundance I don't deserve.  Amen.
Goodnight sweet friends, near and far, may we all rest on a bed of thanksgiving tonight.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 24

Day 24
Today I am thankful for three beautiful children, who flock around their mama like little chicks, who consider me their favorite place.  I am thankful for their daily requests for special time, with just them.  It is my earnest prayer, that even in my blazing imperfections and failures, I will point them to their Father's love with my love for them.  Father, I thank you for being MY favorite place.  Thank you for your forgiveness and grace, your mercy that is new each morning.  Thank you for loving me, in all my sin and wretchedness, and washing me white as snow by the blood of Jesus!  Thank you for blessing and entrusting me with four young lives and a precious man to pour into and love.  Thank you for the ways you use each of them to shape and refine me and to draw me closer to you.  You are the giver of good gifts!  May I never stop praising Your name and thanking You for all that You are and all that You've done!  Amen

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 23

Day 23
Today I am thankful to have this beautiful girl home with us for the next five days!  As much as she loves school, she's happy about a break too.  We have plans for lots of reading and snuggling and movies and walks as a family.  And of course, LOTS of eating!  This picture also happens to be taken when I was exactly 23 weeks.  I'm now 26, the weeks are flying!

Monday, November 22, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 20, 21, and 22

Day 20, 21, and 22
Well, just when I thought I was getting better, bronchitis really settled in, so I'm combining the weekend's days too.  But I am so excited that it's Thanksgiving week!  I am so thankful that Travis will have six whole days off with us this week, I'm positively giddy!  We got all our Christmas decorations up inside on Saturday night while my mom was here this weekend.  It just makes the house so cozy, I love it.  I am thankful for eggnog and Christmas music, for stuffing and hot rolls and green bean casserole, for pies and homemade whiped cream, yes food is a gift and the enjoyment of it even moreso.  Happy Thanksgiving week to all!  May you have safe travels and warm times with family and friends this week.

Friday, November 19, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 17, 18, and 19

Day 17, 18, and 19
Once again, an illness has kept me from keeping up with my daily thanksgiving, this time it was me who has been sick.  But in my efforts to be obedient to the call to "give thanks in all circumstances", I am truly thankful for an illness that reminds me how good it is to only be temporarily out of comission.  There are so many who struggle daily with pain and chronic or terminal illnesses who don't have that light at the end of the tunnel.  Thank you Father, that I was ONLY sick for a few days and that you are making me well again.  Thank you for a husband who takes care of us so well and steps up to the plate when mama is in bed.  And thank you for the humble reminder that chores can wait and that the meals I cook, or don't cook, do not define my worth.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 16

Day 16
Today I am thankful for coffee dates on cold evenings with good friends, I'm looking forward to such an evening tonight.  There's just something about sipping a hot drink while bearing our souls and laughing together that is such medicine for woman's spirits.  May we never underestimate the importance of maintaining our female friendships.

Monday, November 15, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 15

Day 15
I am thankful for the Holy Spirit, convicting me of sin, encouraging my heart, and enlightening me to the truth of God's Word.  I am thankful for God's mercy, that is new every morning, that I do not have to sink under the weight of a day's failures without the hope of complete forgiveness, renewal, and the promise of wisdom when I ask for it.  Thank you Father for saving me from the filth of my sin by the torturous death and glorious Resurrection of Jesus Christ!  Your love for me inspires me to live a life that is pleasing to you and to share the good news with others.  Thank you for adopting me through my faith alone, so that every good work springs forth from gratitude, not stressful attempts at earning your favor, which no imperfect human can ever do on their own merit.  You are my everything, my love, my life, my Savior, and my friend.  May my life exist to praise your matchless name and may my joy be complete in you, as nothing else but knowing you can give me true joy.  Amen!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 12, 13, and 14

Days 12, 13, and 14
After a weekend of coughing and body aches and a baby boy with stomach flu, I am thankful today for a day of rest, for the calm after the storm.  Looking forward to still waters and green pastures again.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 11

Day 11
Today is Veteran's Day, so let me give my genuine thanks to all the service men and women who have, do, or will serve our country, not only by fighting for our freedom, but for the freedom and justice of those without a voice or defense.  God bless you and your families for your tremendous sacrifice, for laying down your life for others!  I will probably never know what it's like to have my husband on a year-long deployment, but I know so many heroic wifes who have.  So today, not only do I want to honor those serving, but also the families they leave behind.  May God sustain you and fill you with the joy and peace and safety that only He can provide while you are missing your loved ones.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 10

Day 10
As the cold air moves in, I am increasingly thankful for shelter, a home and roof to keep out the elements.  Not only does our home protect us, but it encircles us in arms of togetherness, cozy times on the couch or snuggled in beds.  It is a place where the aroma of cooking food and scented candles invite us in after we've been in the world, a place of comfort and love and relaxing.  A house is shelter, a home is something created and longed for.  Thank you Father for our home!

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 9

 Day 9
I am exactly 24 weeks, 2 days pregnant today.  Six and half years ago, my precious nephew Tayden was born at this exact gestation, almost four months premature, weighing only a little over a pound.  He was not much bigger than a pencil, as you can see in the picture below.  Today, I am thankful for Tayden, that God chose to spare and protect his life through modern medicine and His matchless healing power!  I am thankful that Autumn Mae, at this very same size, is still safe inside my womb.  And I pray she will stay there until at least 37 weeks.

Tayden, you are a miracle and such a blessing to all who know you!  Auntie Sarah loves you more than words and can't wait to watch you grow into the man God created you to be!

Monday, November 08, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 8

Day 8
Thank you Lord for naps.  They are few and far between these days, but when they come, what a sweet blessing.  My pregnant body longs for them these days and today, I got one!  I laid down right away when Sawyer and Chloe went down for their naps, so I got a full hour and a half, bliss:).

Sunday, November 07, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 7

Day 7
Today I am thankful for free food!  Noodles and Co. had an awesome deal today where your kids turn in their Halloween candy to be sent to troops overseas and in exchange, they get a free dinner.  So the kids and I had a lovely dinner for just $4.25!  We cleaned our bowls and left with full bellies, I didn't have to cook, and we didn't break the bank, mama likie!  And it was an evening proof positive that a mother with three young children and one in the oven can have a peaceful dinner at a restaurant with her children without fighting or fit throwing, praising the Lord (and my children) for that one big time!

Saturday, November 06, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 6

Day 6
It really struck me today how fortunate we are to live in the same state with all our siblings and both sets of parents.  That will soon change when my brother and his wife move out of state at the end of this month, but even so, they will only be about 8 hours away.  It really is all about perspective and attitude isn't it?  There have been times when I've envied the fact that my sister and mom live in the same town with each other while I'm two hours away, but I always have to remind myself how very blessed I am to ONLY be two hours away from them.  I get to see them about once a month, sometimes more often, and I know there are so many out there, military families especially, who have known the sting of very long separations from loved ones accross very far distances.  There's also the fact that there are no guarantees we will always live so close to each other, so today I'm choosing to cherish the blessing of now.  Thank you father for the blessing of family and for the undeserved gift of having them so close and getting to see them so often.  Amen

Friday, November 05, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 5

Day 5
Today, I am thankful for the people who dare to go deep, who dare to tackle the stuff of life that really matters and share it with others.  I read this post today and love it!  She is one of those people I am thankful for.  Be sure to read this post of Ann's too, somehow the music on her blog opens my heart to deeper places too.

Thursday, November 04, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 4

Day 4
(Travis brought each of the girls a rose home after work one day, because Chloe had left him a tearful message at work saying she missed him)
At around 4am this morning, I was suddenly awakened by an aweful cramp in my calf.  All I could mutter to Travis was that I was having a bad cramp!  He quickly wanted to know where, thinking I was talking about a contraction, so I eked out "calf".  I finally got it to release, when Sawyer woke up.  I like to think he sensed his mama in peril, but it was probably just a coincidence.  Travis jumped up to tend to him, but I soon heard calls for "mommy" that I couldn't roll over and ignore.  He just needed a little reassurance from a bad dream I think, as all it took was a few rocks and he was ready to be put back in his crib.  Not even an hour later, we heard Emma calling for me in panic, so once again Travis jumped up from bed and ran to her.  Then I hear racing feet coming back down the hall and Travis say, "she's going to throw up!"  They made it to the toilet, but once again, it was mama Emma wanted.  Travis tried to convince her that I was pregnant and needed my rest and that he would fill in as back rubber and hair holder, but I could tell she longed for me in that moment, so out I rolled.  She was on an every 15 minute roll, so I made a bed for myself on the bathroom floor and closed my eyes in pretend sleep as I rubbed her back.  After about 30 minutes, Travis appeared at the door and said he'd take a shift, so I went back to bed.  As I snuggled in, I listened to the sweet words Travis whispered to Emma, that he loved her and would take good care of her and she would be okay.  After a few more rounds over the toilet, she fell asleep in the make-shift bed on the bathroom floor, so Travis returned to bed.  The next time she woke up, it was Travis she called for.  And this leads to what I give thanks for today, Travis.  Not only did I mention him yesterday as my dearest friend, or the day before that as our provider, but today I celebrate him as my mate and companion, the servant leader of our home.  He loves and cares for us with such selflessness, it can only come from one place, Christ in him.  I often call him my night time hero as he has never been the type of husband to lay like a rock in bed as I tend to all the kid's night time needs.  In fact, aside from when I am nursing a baby, he is the usually the first one out of bed to answer our kid's calls.  He sacrifices his own sleep for mine and never tries to make me feel guilty about it.  Especially when I'm pregnant, I SO MUCH appreciate this way he selflessly loves me.  And selfless love illicits selfless love, does it not?  Nothing makes me want to serve him more than my gratitude for the way he serves me!  I delight in doing his laundry and making him meals and keeping the house clean, because these things bless him and I just love him so stinking much!  Thank you Lord for Travis, You love me so well through him, I really don't deserve it.  Show me ways to love and bless him even more as I fill my tank with Your love for me.  Amen!

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 3

Day 3
Friendship.  Such a commonly used word and yet there are so many different interpretations of what it means.  Today, I am thankful for the true and Godly friendships God has blessed me with in my life.  With my husband and with the beautiful women whose hearts I have come to know and love.  Friendship, to me, is what God describes in scripture as true brother/sisterhood in Christ.  Relationships where we offer forgiveness before it is ever asked for, where intimate accountability is desired and offered in love as we both desire to grow more like Christ, where humility and servanthood are given, without the expectation of equality.  It is a place where we can be real and open and honest, a listening ear for breaking hearts, an encouraging word in times of despair, a challenge towards righteousness in times of our weakness, prayer together when the best place for us is at the foot of the cross.  Friendship is the closest extension of God's love for us we can come to in human form, more and more beautiful the closer we draw to Him.  It is pouring out our lives for each other, considering each other more important than ourselves.  To all of you who have been and are this type of friend to me, I want you to know how very thankful I am for you!  I praise God for you and pray to grow more and more in my love for you.  You are gifts from above, God with skin on to me, He has used you in ways you will never know to bless, challenge, and grow my heart.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

A Month for Giving Thanks- Day 2

Day 2

Today, I am praising the Lord for His provision.  Specifically, through the hard work of my husband.  God has blessed Travis with work since the day we brought Emma home from the hospital, he has never been without it, even in this sketchy economy.  Not only that, but God has provided well enough for us never to have to consider me needing to work to supplement his income.  I have been able to be the full time homemaker I have always wanted to be, and because I know there's no guarantee this will always be the case, I am flat on my face with gratitude!  We have a home, food in our pantry and fridge, clothes on our backs, cars to drive and far more wants than we deserve.  My prayer is that as I ponder the tremendous blessing of God's provision, I would be moved more and more every day to give and overflow to others in need.  That I would have a spirit of true contentment, of understanding that nothing is mine, but all the Lords.  I am but a steward of every material and non-material gift He has given me.  I pray that I would be a good steward, that greedy or materialistic would never be words to describe me.  Thank you father, for abundantly providing for all my needs!