I just finished reading Ann Voskamp’s One Thousand Gifts. If ever there was a book that rocked me . . . this would be it. It had been recommended to me for over a year. I finally purchased a copy and held it in my hands waiting for an epiphany.
Only a few pages in and I had to grab my pen. I started marking paragraphs with a star that spoke to me. Because I quickly realized, this is a book I should read more than once. This is a book I should reference when life seems like too much. And lately, it does.
As cliche as this sounds, I have had the weight of the world on my shoulders. A month ago I found something on the internet that shook me, haunted me and worst of all, made me question my faith in God. I won’t go into detail. It would make you sick. But I will say this much. Since finding it I have spent many nights in absolute desperation. Crying out to God to please stop the pain and the agony that is going on in this world. I have asked him for understanding. I have asked the age-old question. Why God? If you are really there how can you let this happen?
I have always been sensitive. More sensitive than most people, I think. Sometimes I let the world’s problems fall on me. When I feel I can’t do anything about it I get sad. Deeply sad. It’s safe to say that I grieve. I grieve for people that I don’t even know.
After two weeks of crying myself to sleep I called my therapist. I went in the next day desperate for her to make it better. She confirmed that I am experiencing a grief reaction. I couldn’t sleep. I couldn’t eat. I couldn’t think straight. All I wanted to do was help. But the problem is thousands of miles away. I felt helpless, useless and hopeless.
And so entered the book. This is not a review. No one is paying me to say this. But it is a life-changer. Dare I say it? A life-saver.
Gratitude. It’s as simple and as complicated as that.
Be thankful. Count your blessings, however small. Because it is all a gift from God. Every little thing.
The dirty dishes in the sink. The job that keeps me away from my kids. The injustice happening all over the world. No matter what is happening – God is GOOD. Always.
I have to believe that. I have to thank Him. Give glory only to Him. Everything I have. Everything that I am. It is because of Him.
He blesses me in the mundane. He blesses me in my sadness. He blesses me in the busyness of an imperfect life.
I feel better knowing that.
I just have to try harder. I have to see. Every day, see.
This is what it’s all about. The believing.
I can’t pretend to understand His plan. I have to stop trying so hard to understand His will.
I just have to trust. When I do I feel better.
Sometimes I hesitate to write about God and Jesus on this blog. I’ll be the first to tell you that in 2006, when I started this blog, I swore I would never write about religion. I thought it was weird.
But He had other plans for me. Our glorious God waited patiently for me.
This blog is mine and spirituality is becoming a big part of who I am. Whoever thought that when I am having a bad day I would learn to pray about it? Oh, amazing transformation. If this makes you uncomfortable, so be it. It helps me. It gives me hope. Who could fault me for trying to find a little hope in this topsy-turvy world?
I was struggling. Struggling in my head and in my heart. But I can let go now.
Because He’s there.
And in the words of Ann Voskamp . . .