Thanksgiving Recap and Christmas Begins!

Thanksgiving was a great experience for our family! It is our first year home in 4 or 5 years…I forget how many exactly. And with some of the family members who came over, it was the first time we had celebrated Thanksgiving with them in 7+ years!

My ‘rents traveled down to Oklahoma City to be with some extended family. My sister and her new hubby did eventually show up, you know, after spending all day in the E.R. She cut off a nice chunk of her finger that morning while she was making last-minute preparations on her dishes she was bringing.

But all in all, it was a very special and heart-warming holiday with everything going like a movie script. I’ve treasured going back over everything in my mind. We even had a funny moment (funny uh-oh) when we discovered the mysterious water leak in our basement was coming from the shower upstairs. No worries, FIL and my Hubbs to the rescue! We fixed it. (Well, they fixed it.) HURRAY! So all was well.

On Black Friday, we opted to stay indoors where it was warm. We began the process of Christmas-ing the house and had oh so much fun doing so! Jeremy and his Dad hung lights on the house and pulled a Christmas Vacation a la Chevy Chase moment when they turned them on for the night. Joy to the world was sung in Jeremy’s best impression. We laughed pretty hard.

Our guests left partially on Friday, then fully on Saturday morning early on. So Saturday night we finished decorating the tree and just enjoyed those special moments I think I’ll never forget with our boys! Here’s a little slideshow.

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Gratefulness and Contentment

Hurray! Thanksgiving is almost here! I already told you guys that I’m excited this whole season long. I think Thanksgiving and Christmas are so beautiful together. The exercise of thankfulness first focuses our hearts and then puts a desire within us to give!

My mind has been focused on how grateful I am for everything God has provided for our family throughout this huge year of transition.  When I look back at this last year, I can see so many times when we had no CLUE how things were going to work out. But, it did every time!

At our church we’ve been looking at the 10 Commandments and how important they are for our lives today. We looked at Coveting this week and some huge things jumped out at me.

Coveting is that desire that is an all-controlling lust. It’s the desire that your heart says “I won’t be satisfied, my life won’t be right, I won’t be happy until I have/achieve…” fill in the blank. I have always thought of that in terms of materials but this week, I was challenged to think of that in more abstract terms. Wealth, people or relationships, titles, impressions,body image…I covet a lot of those things and never even realized it!

Then we read Philippians 4:10-13. I have read this scripture a million times and it has never jumped out at me as it did this weekend. Hang with me!

“How I praise the Lord that you are concerned about me again. I know you have always been concerned for me, but you didn’t have the chance to help me. Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength. ”

In the last 9 years of my life, Jeremy and I have had times where we have lived on almost nothing. There were times when I didn’t know how we were going to make it to the next pay day, how our food or gas would stretch that far. We’ve lived on plenty and enjoyed lunches out with little shopping sprees in between, and we’ve brown bagged it. But I know we can say with Paul that we have learned to live in plenty and with little. God has given us the strength and He has been the One who has provided each and ever time.

In this time of turning our thoughts towards gratefulness for the things we have, I have looked back as far as I can remember and just been amazed at all that God has provided. We are richly blessed now. Where we are right here today. All the things we have and don’t have, people we know and don’t know, images we do and do not project and character qualities we do and do not possess. We are blessed right now with what is in front of us and around us.

And with that, my heart is joyfully content. For maybe the first time in a long time.

Happy Thanksgiving!