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Sunday, October 13, 2013

Choosing Thankfulness

Thanksgiving.  All over this great country of ours, people are getting together with family, sharing the things they are thankful for.  Facebook is full of statuses of gratefulness. And so it should be.  We do have so much to be thankful for, me especially.

  1. My kids.  Honestly, there are days that I just stand back, look at them, and think "Wow, God, I don't think I've wrecked them too badly!"  :)  Seriously though, they are amazing.  To see them moving into young adulthood, to watch them grow and mature is such a gift to me.  
  2. My parents.  I'm not exaggerating at all when I tell you I really do have the best parents in the world.  Now, they're not perfect (sorry, Mom!), but when I need them, they are there.  When things go south, when something exciting happens, when I'm lonely, when I'm happy, when I'm sad, I can call home (and I do!), and Mom will listen.  I think it's pretty safe to say that I would not have made it through the past couple of years without them.
  3. My family. If you know anything about the Wind clan, you realize this is not a small statement.  There will be 28 people sitting around tomorrow's Thanksgiving table, and that doesn't include Alex who had to stay in Mexico, or the little one who will be joining the family in February.  Anyhow, they are amazing.  I just said to one of my sisters the other day that I'm pretty sure the reason God gave me this many sisters is He knew how many cheerleaders I would need.  And they are that.  Add to that their willingness to let me stay at their house, let my kids stay at their house, fix my van, you name it, they're there for me.  And I love them for it.
  4. My friends.  While I often talk about knowing the entire world (and I really do know a lot of people), I don't have a ton of close friends.  But the ones I have a pure gold, and I love them dearly.
  5. My church.  I honestly cannot say enough about our church family at EFree Lethbridge.  I'm so thankful that I'm able to serve in Worship Arts again this year, as I so missed that.  The leadership staff, my kids' small groups, my WOW group - all of it.  Such a major part of our lives.
  6. My school.  Even though I don't work there anymore, and I definitely don't attend there, Immanuel Christian High School will always be "my school".  The community there is also our family, and I'm so thankful for the love and support that the kids and I have gotten.  It is such a blessing to be able to drop the kids off and know that they will be receiving a quality education drenched in the Gospel, and be loved on all day by staff who truly care.
  7. My house.  We've lived here now for almost 8 months, and I just love it.  Every weekend when I clean house, I still think, "wow, I get to live here!"  It's amazing.
  8. My job.  Actually, it's so much more than a job, it's a career.  And more than that, it's a calling.  To be able to work in ministry is amazing.  I am getting so excited to see the doors to the Centre open and to start serving our city - I can't wait!
  9. My university opportunity.  While there are days that I think signing up for my degree was singlehandedly the stupidest thing I could have done, I'm glad I did.  It's a challenge, but it's a good one, and the feeling of accomplishment when a paper comes back with a good mark is fantastic.
  10. My divorce.  I know, doesn't seem appropriate, but I am thankful.  In the next few weeks, I should be receiving a piece of paper from the courthouse saying that I am divorced.  I'm thankful that this journey is over - it's been long and hard, and I'm ready to move on with my life.
Just like that.  10 things that I'm thankful for.  And I could go on.....and on.....and on.

So then why am I still so sad?  How is it that when I have so many good things around me that I still feel so empty?  There are so many people suffering, so many people who would give anything to have a life as good as mine.  But I don't look at them - I'm too busy looking at all those who seem to have it so much better.

God, help me out of this pity party!  I have been so, so richly blessed - help me to see that and to remember it.  To live in the gratitude that can only come from the knowledge of the saving grace of Christ.  

So that's what we're going to do - choose thankfulness.  Because honestly?  I'm so blessed, I have no right to complain about anything.