Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Celebrations and Thanks

We celebrated a friends baby girls first birthday this weekend.  I just love birthdays, and not only because of the cake...

The first birthday is particularly special.  This means it's been a year since this woman entered into motherhood, welcomed the pain, endured labor knowing that a sweet reward laid around the corner. And how sweet she is.

We think about how much we will teach them, show them, walk through life with them and encourage them.  Yet we know so little of how much they will show us, teach us and shape us.

I had to head out before baby girl got her hands on that cake, but I'm sure she stuffed those chocolate cupcakes right into her mouth and in every crevice of her tiny hands, not to mention her hair, and probably, well, everywhere.  Can't wait to see someone's pictures from that!

Earlier on during the visit, I was surprised when my friends father asked "So what is the Lord doing in your life".  I have to admit, I don't get asked that type of question very often and honestly had to get over the shock of the question before I was able to answer it.  And you know what, I'm so glad that he did ask the question.  We all get the question, "how are you doing" and most of us give the quick response of "good",  "great", or "pretty good, how are you?" So often I ask a quick question like that and miss the heart. So often not specific to how life is really going; how are you really walking lately.  What I love most about the question is that it's not about me, but about what Jesus is doing in my life.  How He is molding me, shaping me, teaching me and walking me through everyday life.

Stop and think about that for a second...heavy question isn't it?

I honestly answered the question, and sometimes honesty is a tough thing to spit out.  How I have been struggling through the mundaneness of life and feeling restless.  I have been praying to God about revealing himself to me in a real way; that I just needed a reminder that He was close by. He has answered prayer, in such a real way, but not in the way I expected.

The answer to my prayer came when I was tucking Levi in bed the other night.  We read books, prayed and cuddled.  As I snuggled his warm little body close to mine, I asked him if he wanted to pray.  His response was "no" (which is what he says to everything it seems lately) but I continued to pray anyway.  I thanked Jesus for our day, the fun that we had, for loving us and a few other things.  I wrapped it up with a quick amen, and figured it would end at that.  What melted my heart, and still does when I think about it, was when he continued to go on about all of the things that he was thankful for.
"Thank you my socks...thank you for grandma...thank you for Heather...thank you my Tigger...thank you my choo choo train...thank you my family...thank you my puzzle..."
and his list when on, and on, and on. I was so touched by how Jesus reveled himself to me in that moment. Just at a time when I was done with my thankfulness Levi picked up, to remind me of all the little things, and perhaps things that I had been missing. I am still awestruck of his attitude of gratitude. If he could just hold onto this one nugget of gratitude in the everyday, how it could shape him into a richly thankful, grace filled man of it could shape me.

This sweet prayer time was a great reminder of the lessons that I learned through Ann Voskamp's book One Thousand Gifts, that I read this summer.  If you haven't read this book, I would encourage you to do so. You will not regret it!  Finding the beauty in the little things, and being prepared to be thankful for everything, because I truly deserve nothing.  It's great to sink back into that place, where my very life is but a gift from God.  He owns it all.  My life, breath, soul and socks.  How richly this little boy gift from God has blessed me, and he is only two.

Tell me about the things that you have been thankful for lately.  Big things, little things, mundane things and everything in between.

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