Gather is a very “en vogue” word lately. We see it printed on banners and painted on signs because it hopes to offer a sense of warmth. For me, it brings to mind the idea of gathering my people and compiling the memories of the year. Together we take stock of what’s come and gone.
This quote by Charles Spurgeon comes to mind when it is time to reflect, “We are too prone to engrave our trials in marble and write our blessings in sand.”
In the middle of whatever Monday dumped in my lap, it’s so hard to remember the good things that have happened. It is far too easy to feel pessimistic or overwhelmed. So this November, I’m taking time to gather my blessings and count the gifts from God that I don’t deserve.
The Gift of Family and Friends
What a year I’ve had! My new nephew was born in February. After a tumultuous delivery and stay in the NICU, he’s a healthy, happy, chunky guy!
I also gained a brother-in-law this year as my sister got married at the end of August! A beautiful end to our summer.
We’ve made some new friends this school year as well as new friends in our church!
What has happened in your family or with your friends for which you can give God thanks?
The Gift of Firsts
We’ve had a few firsts this year too. My oldest daughter started losing her baby teeth this year as well as getting glasses for the first time.
We were able to buy our first home after being under contract three times!
First time for my husband going through the process and achieving his mastership through our taekwondo organization.
My baby, my last baby, walked for the first time (shortly before we moved to our new house in May).
What were some of the firsts you encountered this year?
The Gift of Growth
Physical growth for my girls—height, teeth coming in. My oldest learned to ride her bike without training wheels this year!
Spiritual growth: for my oldest—we think she’s almost ready to get baptized, for me—learning more dependence and trust.
Mental growth: for my oldest—learning math this year and swimming with no wings, for my middle girl—her speech sounds are improving as well as her independence, for my youngest girl—potty training (!). For myself—stretching my perceptions and trying my hand at art.
How have you seen growth?
I picture that each of these things I’m thankful for is like a precious stone and I’ve gathered them all, rolling them in my hands, reminding myself of what the Lord has done. And the rest of it…the infections, the financial strains, the home inspections that didn’t come back as we hoped, the personal disappointments, the bad behavior…I’m leaving that behind.
I will give thanks to you, Lord, with all my heart;
I will tell of all your wonderful deeds. -Psalm 9:1