Thursday, November 23, 2017

Thankful Thursday - Ten Things

How can I not give thanks today? What am I grateful for today?

1. The gift of texting. To connect with people who live far away. To encourage friends going through tough times. To send texts with silly photos and cartoons.

2. Going to my Mom's house for big meals. She always invites "strays," folks who don't have family to spend time with during the holidays. They bring food and themselves. We bring food and ourselves. Fun and conversation always ensue.

3. My daughter is absolutely fantastic at engaging people in conversation. Today she brought energy and interaction from both a shy seven year old girl and a reclusive 14 year old boy. His mother said she hadn't seen him talk that much in months.

4. Leaving her house and coming home. Putting on my pajamas, robe, and slippers and crawling into bed.

5. Finding several pieces made by my favorite designer at a discount of 65% yesterday.
I am almost obsessed with the modest, comfortable, roomy, linen garments made by Bryn Walker.

6. Linen? Yes. Because I love to iron.

7. As much as I thoroughly enjoy spending time with friends and family today, eating delicious food, I am also mindful of those whose land was taken from them, whose lives were taken from them, whose land is still being denied to them in the name of greed. Indigenous people continue to be mistreated. I am grateful for those who stand with them and stand for them in the ongoing search for justice, reparations, and fair treatment.

8. Questions that challenge my faith and my way of life. Especially when I don't have a quick and easy answer. Questions that make me think and pray and journal and look for answers.

9. Being asked to help someone come up with a sermon topic. Give me a Scripture passage and I will help you come up with a topic. Give me a topic and I will help you find a passage to wrestle with. I love the Bible, even the parts that I hate. Yes, there are parts of the Bible that I hate. All the violence. The stories of women being raped - and then expected to marry their rapists. Stories of war. But also stories of love and redemption, hope and joy, community and reconciliation. The main question of my life these days is this: How can I take this ancient book with its many miracle stories, so much poetry, so many parables, so much history, this book that serves as the foundation of my faith - and find ways to apply it to this present moment in time?

10. I am grateful for life itself. For breath. For strength. For health.
Five years ago, on Thanksgiving, I was four days away from my first chemotherapy treatment.
I've come a very long way since then. I am enormously thankful.
To be alive is a gift, perhaps one of the greatest gifts of all.
Thanks be to God.

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