One Thousand Gifts, March 7

I ended up having a rather whirlwind weekend, traveling to Illinois on Saturday for a funeral and back again yesterday.  The grandfather of my dear friend Kari passed away last week after a courageous fight with lung cancer.  I was so thankful that we were able to make arrangements for Micah to stay with boys while I made a very quick turnaround trip to Illinois.  When we were in college, I often made weekend trips to Illinois with Kari and got to know her family.  It felt like they became an extension of my own and they always welcomed me into their family life.  I had a very sweet relationship with PaPa--he loved to tease and we would always banter back and forth.  When he was diagnosed with cancer a couple of years ago, we had another bond that brought us together.  He loved the Lord with all of his heart and I am so thankful that I got an opportunity to know him.  I have so many good and fun memories of him.  One of the sweetest was right before Micah and I left for France, we had stopped by to visit with the family and before we left, we gathered in the middle of their living room in a circle holding hands as PaPa prayed for Micah and me.  He will be greatly missed, and yet the service was a celebration of a life that was lived loving the Lord and looking forward to the day that he would meet Him.

This last week, I kept a notebook out on the counter to record my list.  It helped to have a visual reminder to stop and notice and write down little moments, graces small and large that God gave me this week:

234.  Making lists
235.  playing the piano again
236.   “William loves my brother”—written by William on the thankful board
237. great big hugs
238. checking things off the lists
239. the faith of Abraham and sarah
240. Sunshine, warmer days, promise of spring
241. Tulips starting to poke up through the ground
242. Music that turns my heart to God and His goodness
243. Gentle rebuke of the Spirit as I discipline William about self-control issues
244. Connecting with another believer in the doctor’s office
245. Good, caring doctors
246. A good doctor’s visit with nothing new to report
247. Knowing that we do not grieve as those who have no hope
248. Seeing God’s grace in the details—finding something small that I thought I had lost
249. Visiting with a neighbor over the fence
250. Sweet smiles from a baby boy
251. God’s Word is His promise, His promise is His Word, the Word became flesh and dwelt among us
252. Coffee with my neighbor
253. The sweetness of holding a baby
254. Phone calls with my sister
255. Testimony of a life well lived
256. Arrangements made so I could attend a funeral out of town
257. Boys who are going to miss their mommy
258. A safe trip
259. Hugs from loved ones
260. A baby girl who reminds everyone to keep smiling, keep living in the midst of sadness
261. Safely back home
262. A house clean and laundry done by Micah
263. A quiet morning, a cup of coffee with my quiet time while boys are out with their PaPa.


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