Wednesday, November 24, 2010

I'm Grateful

First of all, thanks to Debbie Peck for the fun recipes and resources for Thanksgiving. What a fun encouragement that was. I’m assuming all of us are receiving the WOTH onlineMagazine and the subsequent email from the Editor, “In Between the Lines,” in which it appears. If not, click here.
Now to balance my more negative posts about head lice, car-sickness, and things we don’t take for granted, I want to give some serious thought to the many benefits of living exactly where we do. Your list will not necessarily look like mine, but I offer these to inspire your own. Please add yours in the comment section.

Here is a partial list I made for Thanksgiving (in random order).
I love the simplicity of life here. No junk mail, no telemarketers, and in fact, few phone calls in general. I enjoy the quality and quantity of family time without so many outside distractions. No sports practices or youth events requiring me to be a chauffeur. Cheap reliable public transportation means the kids can get around independently, even to school in the city three times a week.

Living close to our friends means even the youngest can walk back and forth to each other’s houses during daylight. After some upheaval earlier in the year, I am extremely thankful for no further incidents in our town, and that our kids are safe in their comings and goings.

One thing that remains on my list every year is my house. Being settled in my own home for almost 17 years is a tremendous blessing. I love that it is climate- controlled simply by opening and closing windows and drapes. Being adobe, it maintains the warmth or coolness without air-conditioning or heating.

Of course a huge bonus of living where we do is that it provides a meaningful purpose in life. The ministry opportunities alone are a tremendous blessing that short-term teams only glimpse. Even with the challenges and difficulties, we receive intangible benefits. Does that sound weird to say I am thankful for the very problems that cause me to grow more like Jesus?

After that horrible bout with E-coli, I am thankful for good health, which I do not take for granted. I am thankful to see the scales finally inching their way down after ten years of gradually going up. I’m thankful for affordable fresh fruits and vegetables available year-round.

As always, I am grateful for my family and friends, and for modern technology that helps us stay in touch. I love my family, and I thank the Lord daily that my children are all walking with the Lord, knowing so many heart-broken mothers who pray for this daily. I love the fact that we all still want to be together, even though we can’t.

And lastly, I adore each and every one of my very odd diverse friends, both near and far away. I’m thankful for my e-maginary friends on the Sonlight forums, and for my new WOTH friends (you!).

IRL*Gratitude is the gift I give to you.

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