If you're unfamiliar with Ann Voskamp's blog, A Holy Experience, please, do visit quickly. Her blog has such insight and wisdom that connects the plainest of life...if there IS such a thing...on every level with God's wonder.
"Earth is crammed with heaven and every common bush afire with God" is Elizabeth Browning's quote at Ann's header. It's true, you know. God is in the details as well as every breath and for those who live plain lives, we know it well. By plain lives, I mean lives that aren't filled with the minutia of life...the noise of television or radio, the busyness of too many meetings or activities associated with children's school life or even church life. It's all too easy to fall into the busyness of life and then become overwhelmed with it all. To forget that silence is the most peaceful and restorative of all "white noises"; to forget, or become so busy, we don't break bread, together, at the beginning or end of the day; to put catching up on chores around the house before coming together to worship on Sunday and, worst of all, to forget it's all, ALL, a gift from God. Every breath we take, every dollar we make, the food in the pantry, the books on the shelves, cars in the driveway, animals at our feet or in the pastures, clothes on our backs, every blade of grass or rug on the floor. Make your own endless list.
For some years I've ended each blog entry with a small list of blessings. It serves to ground me in a tiny way, to remind me...perhaps others...of things I...we?...sometimes overlook.
When I found A Holy Experience, I found it lush with God's grace, Ann's beautiful photographs, words of wisdom...all gifts in themselves...and began, slowly reading it, pondering her words, seeing similarities and differences in our lives, seeing a vein of gratitude that runs through each and every entry. God has given her an attitude of gratitude and has blessed me with that same gift.
In November 2006, Ann suggests keeping a journal of gratitude, A List of a Thousand Things. When I first ran across One Thousand Gifts, I thought, "I already do this when I list blessings at the end of every post." Then, I tucked this thought away in my mind and, every so often, would pull it to the fore front and ponder it. Yesterday, the light...Light...dawned and I realized why I should begin A List of a Thousand Things. Not for God. He already knows the gazallion blessings He bestowes upon me in an hour. No, A List of a Thousand Things is for me. To see things I never saw, to hear things I never heard, to taste things I never tasted, to feel things I never felt, to smell things I never smelled. To bring Awareness to me in a way never experienced. To bring a dimension to my 'practicing Christianity' that will bring me closer to Him, the Giver of all gifts.
I'm sure to miss writing down things because the List won't be with me at all times. But I'm also sure to expand my Attitude of Gratitude, my wonder and awe at His loving care over me and all of us at Thistle Cove Farm.
Oh, I won't give up my small blessings at entry end; that will always be a part of each entry. I do have a small notebook that, today, begins my journal journey, A List of a Thousand Things.
“Earth is crammed with heaven and every common bush afire with God. But only he who sees takes off his shoes. The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries.”
Blessings ~ journal journey ~ YOU ~ A Holy Experience ~ Ann Voskamp ~ attitude of gratitude ~ His gifts ~