The life of Eucharisteo, the life of giving thanks – it takes determination, a keen awareness of one’s attitude and a sharp attention to the surrounding world. It’s a choice to be made daily. Sometimes hourly. Sometimes minute-ly (I know. That’s not a word, at least not how I meant to use it. But I was on a roll! 😉 )
And so I begin my list of blessings, my reasons to give thanks:
1. The sound of the box fan lulling me to sleep each night
2. The softness of my pillow that my husband constantly tries to claim as his own
3. The security I feel in my home allowing me to sleep soundly through the night
4. The cozy slippers I reach for every morning when I wake
5. The quietness of the morning as I sip my first cup of coffee
7. A second cup of cup!
8. Listening to my favorite tunes on the way to work,
9. Flawlessly executing Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas” before the clock even strikes 8 AM while I’m sitting in a line of traffic… waiting… (Yes, I’ve broken my rule that all things Christmas must wait until the day after Thanksgiving. And who’s to say my singing wasn’t absolutely perfect? When you’re in a car alone, your singing can be anything you say it is! 😉 )
Waiting. Hmmm. Is waiting one of the graces God bestows on His children, a gift for which I should be thankful?
When I’ve left the house five minutes late and find that everyone else must have done the same causing traffic to be so congested that there’s no way I’ll make up those lost minutes on the road, am I to be thankful for the wait?
When the driver in front of me insists on poking his way onto the expressway rather than using the onramp to reach the speed needed to merge with the flow of traffic, am I to be grateful that I was almost run over by the semi that couldn’t slow down to accommodate the careless driver’s pokiness?
When I see a friend or loved one making the same mistakes, living the same consequences, though I’ve prayed steadfastly for their eyes to be opened, for their deliverance from their chains, can I thank my God for their extended suffering, for the help that has been seemingly delayed?
Is there a place for waiting on my list of blessings? Does God truly expect me to be thankful in those situations that test my patience, my sanity, my ability to keep my frustrated (and often sarcastic) thoughts to myself, in those situations that test my faith?
“We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation.”
Romans 5:3-4 NLT
Yes, there’s a reason for our times of waiting. With waiting comes patience and understanding. With waiting, we discover what it means to have hope, to trust in a God who knows our every need, whose help always arrives on time, and who works even the times of waiting for our good.
Let’s see. Where was I in my list of blessings?
Oh, yes, that’s right.
Reason to give thanks #10: