I’ve been pondering a lot these days and thankfulness is one thing that keeps coming to mind.
I’m talking about the thanks that genuinely comes up from your heart and spills over when you open up. That is what has been happening to me. Up until now the scriptures instructing us to be thankful were very task oriented to me. It was something I tried hard to do, usually immediately after complaining about my job or something I am supposed to be thankful for. Now, sometimes it’s beginning to happen naturally. I believe it is a choice, but I am also experiencing that it is about what is being cultivated in my heart too.
While living in in the UK I was always living on next to nothing. One day, when some money came in my housemate and I went to the store. I grabbed some badly needed shampoo from the shelf and said, “Thank you God for this shampoo!” I hadn’t really thought before I said it, and I meant it with all my heart. Going without shampoo had not been fun! My housemate just stopped and was uncharacteristically quiet. He then told me that not once in his life had he ever even had the thought to thank God for something like shampoo. I told him neither had I until I had gone without it!
These days my life is a lot different, yet we’re still watching every penny and never really have a lot left over when all the bills are paid. In the midst of this, often stressful, lifestyle I find myself lately being a lot more aware of what I am thankful for. Obviously, my husband, my son and my family, but also the food in our refrigerator, the meat in our freezer, the heat, the lights, the gas in our tanks, the laughter in our home. It’s amazing. It’s like there is a heightened sense of what we have and of Who has provided it for us.
Jesus is drawing me towards him. To be honest, it’s a bit closer than I am comfortable going. Yet I completely ache to be his close friend. It’s great. I am becoming more aware of what He asks for and also of what He gives. More aware of those in need. I think I need? Huh! I have A LOT. It is a great love we are called to be a part of. My soul is not satisfied without Him… so I hope I do not waste this time.
O God, when I have food,
help me to remember the hungry;
When I have work,
help me to remember the jobless;
When I have a home,
help me to remember those who have no home at all;
When I am without pain,
help me to remember those who suffer,
help me to destroy my complacency;
bestir my compassion,
and be concerned enough to help;
By word and deed,
those who cry out for what we take for granted.
-Samuel F. Pugh