Thursday, September 18, 2014

Thankful Thursday

I hear lots of stories every week. On the telephone. In person. Via the internet. Sent in texts and What's App messages. Tearful stories. Joyful stories. Parenting stories. Faith stories. Broken relationships. Financial hardships. Pregnant. Trying to get pregnant. Preparing for the birth of their first child. Decorating the nursery. Married. Getting married. Wishing to be married. Widowhood. Divorced. Getting divorced, Wishing to be divorced. Recovering from abuse. Their dog died. A new puppy has joined the family. New jobs. Lost jobs. Seeking a job. Wild fires burning near your home. Kids heading off to school. Kids coming home from school. Kids deciding not to go to school at all. Anxiety. Loneliness. Abandonment. Homelessness. Times of transition. Addiction. Over-spending. Arthritis. Kanswer surgery and chemotherapy. Chronic illness endured and overcome on a daily basis. Doctor's appointments. Dentist appointments. Teeth pulled. Dentures made. The college search process. Car accidents and near misses. Encounters with mailboxes. Church crises. The end of a congregation I attended for nearly eight years. Figuring out ways to get our houses and our lives in order. Accepting the messiness of our lives and learning to love ourselves anyway.

I love listening to stories, the happy ones and the sad ones.
I laugh. I cry. I write some of the details in my journal.
I write down names and places and circumstances.
I write down hopes and prayers and dreams.
When I reread them, I laugh again and cry again and pray again.

Tonight I am grateful for all of the stories.
I am grateful for you, the storytellers.
I am grateful for your courage.
I am grateful for your beauty.
I am grateful for your trust in me.
I am grateful that I can trust you.
I am grateful for your ongoing presence in my life.
I am grateful to be an ongoing presence in your life.
I am grateful for your friendship.
I am grateful for you.

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