Friday, September 16, 2011

Thankful Thursday (ed. 2.4)

It's time for my favorite post of the week, even if it's just a little bit late.  Let me get to it!

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Today I'm Thankful for.....

~ Fall ~
Well, it's here. In all of it's glory, crisp, clean fall air. Sunsets that glow a little brighter and more vibrant. Leaves starting to shift from green to reds, purples, yellows, oranges. This morning, I pulled out my hoodies and started looking for my favorite fall shoes. It's time for soup, hot drinks, pumpkin flavors, and many more beautiful things in my favorite season. This season always makes me want to cuddle up in a blanket, sit on our back porch with a cup of tea and a book, and maybe add a favorite person to that cuddling bit.  ;) In all seriousness, though, this season does draw up this great desire to be in love, to share the glorious weather and views here on a walk, or a ride through the Blue Ridge Parkway. At any rate, it's just my favorite time of the year. I'm thankful that it's fall again.

~ Studying ~
For all my frustration with the feeling that my nose is constant in a book, I feel such a sense of accomplishment when I manage to get to that last page, the last paragraph of the readings. I can tell you that it's not on my own strength that I'm managing to get through this season of life. If it weren't for the constant encouragement from my family and a few close friends, along with the strength and gifts of Christ within me, I'd be nothing. I'm thankful for the opportunity.

~ Netflix ~
One of the biggest news stories on yahoo was a story about Netflix losing customers due to the price hike. Yeah, I can understand that. I'm actually contemplating cutting back my account to instant stream, since it's mostly what I use anyway. But, I just don't think it's possible for my movie-loving self to cut off the Netflix stream. I love movies and they are tremendous de-stressor for me. Yeah, I'm thankful for the technology that allows for me to watch movie now and again.

~ Sacred Things ~
And I don't refer to religiously sacred things like church services or anything like that. What I am talking about however are the things between two people that are private, sacred, spoken in confidence and held there like a gift shared by just the two. Too many people want to have a piece of everything in my life. Some things are just sacred. I'm thankful that there are things that remain shared in a private space. I will no longer give those things over to be profaned by people who do not understand them. I'm thankful for a mother who understands this & supports me in it, as well as the experiences that have shown me that sacred things should remain sacred.

~ Keith Urban ~
Yeah, I did just say I'm thankful for Keith Urban. Let me say this, I'm thankful that I didn't delete all of the Keith Urban songs from my computer, because I was tempted to on a few occasions. But I didn't and that's a good thing. But what's better is that I am thankful for the hope in those songs. Keith has a really interesting story, I read about it not long ago. He was an alcoholic and self-destructing and then he started cleaning up. But then not long after that, he met his now wife, Nicole Kidman and married her. Now, I am fully aware that celebrity marriages are not known for their longevity. I'm not about to make an assessment of that. But what I will say is that in those songs, Keith Urban sings about the hope and reality of a love that changes a person from the inside out. I love that hope, I love that that kind of love is real. I am thankful for the shooting star of life that comes in those songs.

~ Restoration ~
It's amazing to me when God gets to work through a situation and work backwards to restore it. This time last year, I was seeing how God was restoring years in my life that I thought were wasted. Again, I found myself not long ago feeling like time had been destroyed with no view of restoration in sight. But the beautiful thing is that without my hands on things, God took over. He restored something that seemed broken beyond repair to my human eyes. Recently I was listening to a sermon and the speaker discussed how we as humans should be restorers, it's what we're called to do in this broken world. With all of my heart, I want to be that person, to be a human agent of restoration in lives and hearts that are broken beyond what seems humanly reparable. Not out of my own strength, power or will but by the power of the Holy Spirit, the Love of Christ flowing through me. That's my greatest desire. And I know that God allows for me to do that regularly. I'm thankful for His ability to restore, and his willingness to let us participate in His restoration.

~ Phone Calls ~
This week, I've been alone in my house. Neck deep in my school work, swimming in the deep water of grad school,but my one saving grace this week has been the phone calls I've gotten to receive or make. Some of the "how are you? I don't have long but I'm just checking on you." variety, some of the "epic length plumbing the deep place or just laughing til my sides hurt." variety. Either way, these phone calls have been a life-line to humanity for me. Whatever they may or may not be, I'm thankful for them.


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