Tag Archives: family

Walk in Gratitude

I find myself lately being overwhelmed at times by a great and deep sense of gratitude. I will be lying in bed at night or making coffee in the morning or driving to the grocery store. The surroundings may differ, but the feeling is the same. I would not say that I am one that has a bounty of material things, this is not where true gratitude in your soul will arise. I do, however, have a wealth of blessings that money cannot buy.

Each time that this feeling has rushed over me, it has had one origination point. I have been thinking of, speaking to or about my daughter. She is now 5 years old. I see how she is loved and therefore loves, how she is creative, joyful, humorous, empathetic and full of energy. I see also where I was at 5 years old. My parents had just divorced, my mom was raising 3 children with very little help and she worked very late hours. I found myself being very motherly [which I still tend to do with my siblings]. I remember the 5, 6, 7 year old me and I can’t help but rejoice at the blessing that is my 5 year old daughter.

I have heard many times that we, as parents, are to have the goal of raising our children to far exceed what we ever did [or dream of doing]. I see much potential in my daughter and I want nothing more than to nurture this and see her grow into the astounding and beautiful creation that God spoke into existence before the world was even formed.

How can we not be grateful? When you look into the eyes of your child, your niece or nephew. How can you not be captivated by the eagerness, zeal, astonishment, curiosity and potential lying within?

Look around you. Look behind you. See that from which you have risen and rejoice! See the blessings that the Lord has bestowed on you and your family and rejoice! Allow yourself to be overwhelmed with gratitude and walk that out. You can only be better for it.

“Do not indulge in dreams of having what you have not, but reckon up the chief of the blessings you do possess, and then thankfully remember how you would crave for them if they were not yours.” ~Marcus Aurelius

Reach out…eagerly

“The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.”

~Eleanor Roosevelt

 

I have been muted for awhile.  And then I stumble upon a quote such as this.  It enriches me.  It inspires me.  It moves me.

The summer has descended upon us and I believe there is no better time than summer to embrace such a warcry for your life.  Embrace LIVING life to the fullest, embrace new and rich experiences.  Each morning, wake up and believe that this day you will not overlook or pass by any opportunity presented.  Such an opportunity can be to smell a beautiful flower, to play on the playground equipment with your children or to take the lead on a new account at work.  All of these are rich experiences in life and will instill valuable character, demeanor and perspective within you that will last a lifetime.

Now is the time. No longer muted, but invigorated by the life that is at your doorstep.

Turning Complaining Into Praise

I found this devotional on a website I frequent and thought it was definitely something to pass along.  In fact, I think I may just institute this praise journal idea in our home!  Enjoy!

Turning Complaining Into Praise, By Wendy Pope

“It is good to praise the Lord … For you make me glad by your deeds, O Lord; I sing for joy at the works of your hands.” – Psalm 92:1-4

A few months ago I noticed the climate in my home had changed. It seemed nothing was good enough, attitudes were negative and a lot was being taken for granted. Appreciation had turned to complaint and contentment to displeasure. My family was snippy and short in our treatment of one another.

One day I had had enough and declared, “This has got to stop!

The Lord whispered the word praise to my heart and showed me we had become praise-less. On the way home from my kids’ school I issued the following decree: “From today forward we are going to be a grateful family, thanking God for everything He does. Whether the blessing is big or small, direct or indirect, we are going to praise Him.”

I purchased a small notebook and placed it and a pen on our TV stand. Later that day, I peeked inside and was delighted to read my daughter had recorded the first praise. “I made brownies today. Dance Central and Kinect gives me a way to exercise inside.” The days followed with more praises recorded from our whole family.

• Mrs. Macedo, my English teacher
• Selling 31 boxes of Girl Scout cookies
• Daddy’s job
• Family devotions this morning
• 85 boxes of Girl Scout cookies sold
• Erin is spending the night
• My ticket was thrown out of court (This was my personal favorite)

The more we gave thanks, the more our attitudes changed.

In today’s key verse, the psalmist teaches us that praising God is good. There is something mysteriously powerful about giving glory to the Lord. The joy created by my family’s praise transformed the once unpleasant climate to one that is now warm and accepting, appreciative and complimentary.

Is our home always full of compliments and kindness? No, we are human and can easily fall back into complaining. But our family’s praise book has made us more aware of God’s goodness and we give praise more readily. We’ve experienced how good it really is to praise God.

Every day gives us opportunities to worship God, whether they seem minute or mighty. Through praise, our burdens don’t seem so heavy and our life becomes a sweet fragrance to those around us.

Try it. Try praising God for the parking space close to the door or the one far away because you have the opportunity to enjoy being outdoors. Praise Him for the kindness of the bank teller. Praise Him for the opportunity to wake up and hear creation’s symphony of praise, even if it is 5:00 am on a Saturday and the dog woke you up.

Give praise today. It’s good for you and will transform you and others.

Dear Lord, I want to sing a song of praise everyday in response to Your goodness. Prick my heart to praise You in the minute and the mighty. You are worthy! In Jesus’ Name, Amen.