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Today I turn thirty-seven. Even more than when I turned thirty, this year seems kind of monumental. I know in the grand scheme of things in the world it is no longer really “old” but it feels kind of old to me; like I should be firmly established and grown up….which I don’t feel at all. Never mind the fact that I have a mortgage, an almost nine year old (and a five year old, but the nine is what’s killing me) and have been married for almost fifteen years.

That said, I am pretty darn blessed.

So as a gift to myself, I’m listing thirty-seven blessings that come to mind.

1. my God and Savior who loves me and pursues me and never stops…even though I fumble and fail continuously

From Tremont 2012- ?

2. my sweet husband who is so patient and has stuck with me through so many ups and downs. There aren’t even any words to share.
3. my son, who is so like me and has revealed so much about myself through him. It’s because of him that I’ve grown and been challenged in so many ways. He is confident, funny and genuinely friendly with pretty much everyone.
4. my daughter, who is so NOT like me and has challenged me and stretched me in so many ways. Her desire to go slow, to stop and look and smell and see, forces me to stop and look and smell and see and that is good.

From Tremont 2012- ?

5. my family who is always there and available
6. my core of girls. I’ve got a core of sweet girlfriends in my life that I know I could call at 2am. I realized this a few months ago and I’ve been overwhelmed with gratitude and amazement of the gift of them
7. this home I live in. Smack in the middle of a park, an older home with character, the ability to walk to school. awesome
8. memories. good and bad. those that are teaching me and moving me out of the past and into the present with expectation for what the Lord is doing in my future

From CO: Captivating 2011

9. space. the gift of space to create, design my days and be there for my children when they come home
10. security. which I’m learning isn’t resting in the number in my bank account, but rather in the faith of my heart
11. the changing seasons. which prove to me that my God is alive and changing and ever present
12. the view outside my window. dogwoods, daffodils and lush grass
13. the school that my children attend…the proximity to our home and the ability for me to be present there
14. the chance to start again. a new community, new friendships, new place of worship.
15. the health of my family…both for myself, my husband, children and parents
16. for the expectation of the future and the knowledge of the story that God is writing in my life
17. for words and the ability and place to share them
18. freedom. the knowledge that the Lord is freeing me from my strongholds
19. today. that today is enough and today is what I make it. not worrying about tomorrow and not consumed with the mistakes of yesterday
20. for late night talks after the light goes out with my husband. those last little bits of conversation before we drift off
21. for a “power hug” from my son this morning and the feel of his arms around my waist…the memory of those arms around my legs not too far in the past
22. for the neck nuzzle of my sweet girl in the morning. that little bit of snuggling before she wakes up
23. watching my children sleep at night
24. playing tennis last night as a family. the laughter, the joy, the fun and the memory of doing something that my husband and I used to do so long ago. so good.
25. photographs. sitting as a family and looking at photos from last year. remembering and seeing how we have all grown in so many different ways

melongirl2

26. sewing. oh how I love to create and design and make. I’m so grateful for the space, time, ability and even finances to be able to do something that I love
27. forgiveness. saying the word to my husband and children
28. music. the way it stirs pictures in my head and the memories it evokes.
29. for babies. playing with a sweet baby at church on Sunday, seeing a commercial that reminds me so much of my babies and holding a friend’s sweet baby last week. ah! how I love that feeling in my arms

heart tree

30. quietness and stillness, how I need this and how eagerly the Lord provides it for me in so many ways
31. being found. the security I am realizing in knowing that I’ve been found and pursued by Jesus…all the way to the cross.
32. the realization that my story is not over. there is much more to write and share
33. a good book. how I love to be transported and how easily a book can grip me and tear me away from all my responsibilities.
34. my desire to teach. how God is taking that gift and moving it in different directions.
35. good food. like really good food. like a $25 a plate dinner kind of food. so special in our lives and such a treat and oh how delicious
36. tears. How I don’t let them fall, for joy or for sorrow, and yet how the Lord uses them for my good. To cleanse my soul.

the view from look rock tower

37. for beauty. That the Lord is teaching me what real beauty is and what it means to be noticed, not for the things I do, say or the way I look…but for His Spirit within me. May I walk more fully in His light this next year.

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