How can I say thanks?
For the Carolina blue sky that hung placidly overhead this morning as Kristiana and I went for a long walk? For bright sunshine today after several days of drenching rains? For the strength of our legs and lungs as we plowed up and down the hills of our neighborhood?
For the love of family and friends - some of whom will gather in a couple of hours to eat, drink, be merry, talk, laugh, tell stories, and then undoubtedly take a nap?
For the turkey, beef (made by my mother for those of us who don't like turkey), salad, vegetables, stuffing (my own recipe), homemade cranberry sauce, and all the other goodies we will gorge ourselves on?
For the books I've read, the music I've listened to, the lessons I've learned, the journal and scrapbooking pages I've filled in these past few weeks?
For the traveling mercies that surround me on every trip, whether to Spain or to the supermarket, whether to church or Starbucks? For the friendly faces and warm greetings of both familiar and unfamiliar ones I meet along the way?
For the countless stories and anecdotes I hear and read that give evidence of the love, the grace, the forgiveness, the restoration of families, and the reconciliation taking place between former enemies?
For the countless people whose life mission is to bring about peace, reunion, and reconnection between the lost, the broken, the weary, and the heavy laden?
For the realization that His will can be done and is being done on earth as it is in heaven - and for the ways in which I see that will being done in my heart, in my home, in my community, and around the world?
I am thankful that there are many who seek to spread words of love in a desperate and lonely world.
I am thankful that there are many who refuse to spread words of poison, accusation, and derision.
I am thankful that there are those who stand against violence and war - whether they are wars of words or weapons of mass destruction.
I am thankful that I can make a difference in this war-torn world by being an ambassador for peace, for laughter, for forgiveness, and for beauty.
For this and for so much more...
for oatmeal with bananas cut up in it
for yerba mate tea
for snuggles with my hubby and children
for Maya's tiny little tail at the end of her tiny little body
for online sermons by Rob Bell
for the power of prayer
for the strength that comes from silence
for telephone calls with distant friends
for collages in my journals
for cross necklaces
for Ali Edwards, Leonie Allan, Jen Lemen, Kristin Noelle, Jen Gray, Andrea Scher and Joanne Rah - women I have never met in person but whose internet creativity, vulnerability, and heart-filled encouragement have touched and changed my life in ways they may never know
for this and for so much more...
I give thanks.
O give thanks to the Lord
for He is good
His love endures forever.