My fingers are itching to write and my brain says I cannot keep up. My brain needs a rest from everything. So I thought that I would jump on the bandwagon like all of my friends from face book and write about what I am thankful for. After all, Saturday when I was in Target, I was looking at the little girl dresses and just started to sob. I actually and able to get a Christmas dress for all of my girls, that they can all wear together, and they can all attend church. This year we can all be under one roof for this great holiday! Wow!!! So thankful!
I guess on today, election day, it is a great day to be thankful for many things. I am thankful that we live in a free society. I am thankful that I am not getting persecuted for my faith (well, at least I can be very open about it, live it, and not hide it). I am thankful that I know, even under these circumstances, that God is God. He is sovereign and He is King. It does not matter what happens in this election, because He is still God. His plan will continue no matter what. I am accountable to only Him.
I also give thanks for trials. This last year has been an emotional roller coaster. It has seemed like an uphill battle most of the time. However, God has provided abundantly through all of it. Most of my requests have not been answered the way that I have asked, however, God's Will has been done and it has been amazing. I am so blessed to be part of this journey. While I would never want to relive everything, I would not take one thing away. For it is every large and small detail that has made me me today. My faith has been strengthened, I appreciate my daughters, my love for my husband is strong and awesome. I feel like I am a renewed person. I have learned so much about faith, trust, hope, love, and most importantly about who I am as God's child. Without this trial, I would not be me, Lydia would not be Lydia, Ellen would not be Ellen, Allison would not be Allison, and Eric would not be Eric. We have been changed, but more importantly we have been shaped and modeled by our Heavenly Father. We have been loved and provided for beyond what we deserve. My words cannot quite describe how I feel about it, but I am so thankful for this trail. I just praise God.
I also love that God sent His Son to save me. Without that, I would not have my saving grace. I would be nothing without God and Jesus and the Holy Spirit. I am so thankful. I am blessed.
The list can go on and on, however, my eyes have been opened to other things. As we enter this holiday season I am going to try to not focus on gifts, on the things this world tell us is important. However, I am focused on what God has been teaching me, what God has taught me last year. People who gave their Thanksgiving to come and serve those who were hurting. Those people who could not be with their families, or those who were there because their families were divided because of sickness. Being at the Ronald McDonald House has opened my eyes to a whole new way of thinking. People put others before themselves. They were serving because they wanted to. They were helping others. It was amazing. There was a chef that came in on Thanksgiving and prepared for hours to provide a meal to many families. There was a church that came in and helped out. It was so awesome.
And not only at the Ronald McDonald's House but at the hospital too. There were nurses, doctors, care partners, greeters, the hospital was in full function. It was amazing to see. A cardiologist actually came in to talk to us on Thanksgiving about our daughters surgery. A physician assistant came in to get signed consent for Lydia's heart surgery. They did not take a break. They were still serving others on a Holiday. Yes, I realize they still get paid, but they are sacrificing a lot to be able to take care of sick little children. It was amazing as well.
I guess it just opened my eyes to yet more stuff that goes on in this world. I am thankful for my family, for our health, for being together, for our church family, for all of the material blessings. But mostly, I am thankful for the things that I have learned through these trials. I could not be me without these trials. I could not realize the full blessings I have without these trials. To think, we have the opportunity to look at a trial and feel sorry for ourselves (I know that I have done this), we have the opportunity to look at a trial and just give up (I have been there too) and we have the opportunity to look at a trial and just fall to our knees in blessings. I have been doing this a lot lately. I realize there are probably stages that we all go through, but to be able to say thank you in the trial, is the important thing. God gives us these trials to shape and mold us. To make us be better, to increase our faith and knowledge in Him, to give us more trust and strength.
While I am thankful for all of the little things to, I am so thankful for the moments that God has given me that have pushed me to my limits, that have shaped me to be the person that I am today. I am thankful.
We have already started to listen to Christmas music in our house, my Christmas cards are actually all done. However, all of those things mean very little. It is about being together, about being healthy, about having our Savior born and how important that is in our life. Thanksgiving is something we as believers should be doing every day. Thanking God for allowing us one more day to be alive and spread the Good News.
I did not mean to get so "holiday season" in this, but in my mind, I am already there. I am excited because I know what it means for me personally to celebrate the birth of the Savior, because that is one of the things I am most thankful for.
Today Lydia has not been eating very well. I have been praying and waiting on God. Those that wait will renew their strength. She did very well in therapy today, however. It is just a matter of weeks probably before she will be taking off and I will have to run after her! We are very excited. It has been so fun to watch the process. To really see how much work it takes to crawl. The steps in getting there and watching her accomplish each one. What a blessing that is!