“Humbly let go. Let go of trying to do, let go of trying to control, let go of my own way, let go of my own fears. Let God blow His wind, His trials, oxygen for joy’s fire. Leave the hand open and be. Be at peace. Bend the knee and be small and let God give what God chooses to give because He only gives love and whisper a surprised thanks. This is the fuel for joy’s flame. Fullness of joy is discovered only in the emptying of will. And I can empty. I can empty because counting His graces has awakened me to how He cherishes me, holds me, passionately values me. I can empty because I am full of His love. I can trust” (Ann Voskamp, One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are).
Five years ago, I read a book that changed my life. It changed the way I look at my circumstances, allowing me to seek joy and to always be on the lookout for those 1,000 small daily gifts for which to give thanks. There’s always, always something to be thankful for.
I still have moments of grumpiness and days where entitlement and bitterness seem to win out. I go through seasons of complaining and comparison, unrest and envy. I can Debbie Downer with the best of them.
But the best days are still the ones where I give thanks and live out of gratitude and awe. That’s where I see God at work in me and around me. That’s when others see Jesus in me.
Regardless of how well or how poorly I lived out my thanksgiving, tomorrow’s always a chance to do better or start over or simply surrender and let God have His way. I think door number three sounds best.