Wednesday, September 12, 2012

With Thanksgiving

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God."

I have been reading this verse for years, memorized it a long time ago, and consider it to be a great "life verse".  However as many times as I have read it, I think I have missed a crucial part of it...that little line that says with thanksgiving.  With thanksgiving.  In everything with thanksgiving.  Perhaps it is just because I am doing the 1000 gift challenge, but it seems everywhere I go, this message is coming through loud and clear.  The key to joy is in the thanksgiving.  The GIVING thanks.
As a wife and a mother there are a hundred little things that threaten to rob me of my joy, my ability to give thanks during the day.  And the big things, there are those too.
But those little things, those pesky little things like picking up Mr. Potato Head for the 100th time so the baby doesn't chew on it and choke, the laundry that still needs to be folded being dumped all over the floor by the toddler, being in the middle of Walmart when the 2 year old decides to have a meltdown to end all meltdowns, the getting up in the night for a sick child or infant...all of this threatens to rob me of my joy.  But what I am discovering is that when I choose to see these things for what they truly are, a gift, then my joy cannot be taken away.
As a woman, I have chosen life by bearing my children, but I also choose to nurture that life every single day.   Life is a gift, a precious gift.  So when the baby is crying, and my toddler is screaming, and a little old lady is telling me Oh these days go so quickly, I rest in this.  That when we choose to give and nurture life, to find the joy even in the pesky little things, to give thanks...we bring joy to the Father.  The secret to a joyful life?  It's not in the getting.  It's in the giving.

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