Monday, April 25, 2011

Multitude Monday, Take 201

Thanking God this week for...

1553. Christ is risen!
1554. because He lives, I also will live
1555. little girls at church in matching Easter dresses
1556. a friend's baby girl shrieking excitedly at Jude (they were born less than 24 hours apart!)
1557. the opportunity to get to know a new family at church

1558. twelve delightful people around our dinner table last night
1559. first peonies blooming
1560. felt food picnic
1561. sustaining my grandmother after she had a stroke last weekend
1562. sustaining my dad through minor surgery this morning

1563. homemade almond butter
1564. husband's boyish grin
1565. Jude waking up all smiles
1566. a family outing at the zoo, thanks to...
1567. Steve having the day off Friday

1568. Elijah standing on one leg like a flamingo
1569. Jude, my little screeching monkey
1570. a growing ability to improvise in the kitchen (thrown-together fajita seasoning turned out yummy, if I do say so myself!)
1571. bringing beauty from ashes
1572. sending Jesus to drink the cup of His wrath

1573. justice and mercy perfectly coexisting
1574. fantastic new lip balm
1575. reminders of His power
1576. orange + pineapple juice
1577. a basement to hide in when the tornado sirens go off

1578. access to good breastfeeding information
1579. a sweet woman from church here last week for a little babysitting, a little fellowship, and a little antiquing :)
1580. the exercise challenge that kept me diligently working out for the last three months
1581. perfectly planning each step of my journey over the last 29 years

Monday, April 18, 2011

Multitude Monday, Take 200

Two hundred weeks I've done this! Holy smokes!

What's even more amazing is that there's absolutely no danger in running out of gifts to list. "The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness" (Lamentations 3:22-23). This week I am thanking Him for...

1527. bright pink dogwood trees
1528. my friend Marjorie's recipe for black beans
1529. haircuts for Steve and Elijah
1530. a patient husband
1531. an old friend calling me, trusting me with her broken heart

1532. swiftly flowing river
1533. Nichole Nordeman's "River God"
1534. always faithfully polishing, polishing, wearing down my rough edges
1535. a friend's beautiful thoughts on being tumbled and polished
1536. the gift of encouragement

1537. healthy, fully-functioning kidneys
1538. time at the playground
1539. Elijah's giggles and squeals as I push him in a swing
1540. Tim Keller's message on Exodus 14 from The Gospel Coalition conference
1541. Elijah helping me hang diapers on the line

1542. a dear friend here to catch up
1543. preschooler wanting to be held/carried
1544. lanky legs dangling
1545. long arms draped around my neck
1546. butterball of an almost-six-month-old

1547. awesome naps
1548. movie night with my hubby
1549. grocery shopping with Jude on my back
1550. eyes to see Christ in the Old Testament
1551. writers/speakers/pastors that help me see

1552. a glorious Savior

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Backseat Driver

We set out for a walk on a gorgeous spring day. My three-year-old thinks he knows which way to go. And he's very vocal about it.

“No, dat way! Not dis way! Dat way!” He points, the tip of his index finger curling upward with insistence.

“Turn left! I don't wanna go dat way!”

But I know the way to go. I know our destination, and I know the best route that will take us there.

Sometimes it is the destination he desires, and as we walk, he asks for reassurance more times than I have the patience to give gently. “YES! We're going to the park!” I bark out, equal parts exasperated with him and disgusted with my harshness. “YES, we're going to walk beside the water!”

He thinks he knows how to get there, and often he does—which means he becomes quite agitated when I turn the “wrong” way. What he doesn't realize is that taking this alternate route will take us past some of the best spring colors in the neighborhood. The way he prefers is the familiar, comfortable way, but I have new and different in mind; I want to see beauty.

Other times he's flat out wrong when he's desperately wanting me to turn right, not realizing that we'll only get there if we continue straight. We can't turn like he wants to. We have to continue straight, or we won't get there at all.

And then there are times when the place I've chosen is not where he wants to end up. “We're not going home!” he declares (a common statement in this phase when he seems to believe that saying a thing will make it so).

He should be grateful that he gets to go for a walk at all. He should trust me. He should know that I have more years of knowledge and experience than he has, that I walked miles and miles up and down these streets before he was even born. He should sit quietly and let me navigate. He should believe that I am deciding where we will go because I, not he, know what is best.

Instead he argues—and I am annoyed because he is me.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Multitude Monday, Take 199

Um. Apparently it's been a while. I haven't dropped off the face of the earth. And I've in fact had a gazillion things to be thankful for the last couple of weeks--the gifts upon gifts of visiting a dear friend two weeks ago and then spending ten days up in Ohio with our families.

So although I haven't been posting here, I've been counting, counting, counting gifts. The thing I love about gratitude lists is that it's addictive. I've been keeping a daily gratitude list, from which I compose the weekly blog list, since I started a visual homemaking journal in July 2009. It's funny to see how the average length of the daily lists has grown. Y'all, in my journal I am up to 5,435 gifts. More than five thousand specific ways God has poured out His grace on me. And I know there are thousands more I never bothered to record! I serve a generous, extravagant God who wisely bestows gifts on His children--not always the gifts I want or think I need, but always, if I have eyes to see it, gifts that are good.

Over the last couple of weeks I've been thanking Him for many things, including...

1496. green everywhere
1497. bright pink trees in bloom
1498. a trip to Washington, D.C., where I got to visit two dear friends
1499. His sovereignty in bringing both women into my life
1500. a list of over a hundred things to be thankful for about that trip

1501. the miracle of air travel
1502. being reunited with Steve and Elijah
1503. time to focus on just Jude while we were gone
1504. Steve's being respected and valued at work
1505. a trip to Ohio so the boys and I could be with family and friends while Steve was away on business

1506. my amazing, generous, loving, servant-hearted parents and in-laws
1507. opportunities to cook for others
1508. catching up with old friends
1509. being reunited with Steve again
1510. fabulous date at Bravo after he got back

1511. wine
1512. exercise
1513. good metabolism
1514. a church I sorely miss when I have to be away
1515. soft t-shirts

1516. flip-flop weather
1517. a climate where it rains year-round, not "rainy season" and "dry season"
1518. Sovereign Grace's new album, Risen (only $5 for the mp3 download until Friday!)
1519. Jude's excitement to nurse
1520. grace to persevere when nursing was so awful

1521. free books
1522. eyes to see beauty all around me
1523. loving me when I am unlovable
1524. loving me perfectly, not dependent on my performance or in comparison with anyone else
1525. friends who preach the gospel to me

1526. clothing me in the righteousness of Christ