Oh my. How has it been almost a month since we blogged? You know that time warp I mentioned in our last post? My goodness has this month flown by. Lets be real, this year has flown by.
This year has been a journey for me. A journey of finding joy in the midst of trials. A journey of growth. A journey of giving thanks for the small details of my every day life and praising the Lord for those details. This past month I have been almost painfully aware of my surroundings. So much so that I have noticed some of the smallest details of life that I typically overlook. Those details? Oh how grateful I am for those things. I’ve been reminded over and over of these little things and the need to give thanks in all things. Even these.
1. The sweet mother in church who cradles her one month old baby every Sunday and prays over this sweet child and her other daughter. It is so evident that she adores her children and longs to care for and love them deeply. I see her every Sunday and am ever so sweetly reminded that life is truly a gift. And oh what sweet gifts those little babies are.
2. The precious three-year old that fell asleep in my arms at dinner on Sunday night. I know I’m not the only one who feels this way, but there is nothing like having a little one fall asleep in your arms. Absolutely nothing.
3. The Haitian men and women who work tirelessly to provide for their family. Our dear friend Francky who works with Matt and I almost every day is one of those. He works at Mission of Hope, he operates cranes at the shipyard, he helped wire electricity throughout his village, etc. He is a hard-worker, loves his daughter and wife, and loves the Lord.
4. The woman at Tuesday night worship who came in with a girl around the age of 10 who she held so closely as the girl drifted off to sleep. The way she stroked her face, held her hand, rubbed her back. My heart was so touched to see how much love she had for this sweet child.
5. The three giggling boys I hear approaching the schoolroom every morning. The way they try to sneak up on me and scare me every morning. How their sweet smiles light up the classroom when they see their hard work pay off. The way the three of them feed off of each other’s actions but also help each other when they are stuck. If these boys have taught me anything so far it has been how precious family is. They sure do love each other.
6. The thirty-three men and women that love their villages with the love of Christ. Their passion for seeing life transformation take place in the lives of every man, woman, and child through transforming their village. These men and women range in age and have experienced so many things in their lives. Seeing how the Lord has transformed their lives has been one of our greatest joys.
7. The truth that the Lord gives us dreams to dream and fulfills the desires of our hearts. Not only that truth but seeing it played out in our lives. Anyone who has known me for the past, oh, 8 years has known that there has been a part of my heart that has been captivated by this country. My dear friends in college saw my heart ache for this land. Matt and I have dreamed about, talked about, prayed about, and longed for the day we would get to live here and actively be a part of life transformation in Haiti. And here we are. With the support of all of you. What a gift.
8. The God of this world who is just. Injustice surrounds us. All over the world. We hear stories, we see the news, we read the articles. Some of us are distant from these heartaches. We are immersed in them. There are days that I forget where we are and that right outside our door there are starving families, sick children, abuse, and so much more pain and heartache. Then there are the moments where my heart feels like it could burst any minute at the thought of the pain in the lives of those that I see daily. Sometimes I forget that the people I interact with every day have gone through trials and heartaches that even I cannot fathom. Yet I long to fix it. I long to see injustice gone. I long to see the widows and the orphans full of joy. The weight of that is too much for me to carry. That’s where the good news comes in. Our God is a just God. He is the God of justice. He knows the pain, the heartache, the tears. He knows it all. And one day He will reconcile this world to himself. No more pain. No more heartache. No more tears. Oh how I long for that day to be with our Savior and to see some of these hurting faces rejoicing with Him. That beautiful day will come. What a sweet truth to rest in.
My oh my am I ever thankful for these things. Of course I am thankful for friends and family, for health and safety. But above all of that, these are the things I am thankful for. It’s the little things in this life that draw out the need to give thanks. To praise Yahweh for all the gifts he’s given us, whether that’s a loving mother, sleeping baby, laughter, dreams and passions, or simply for the truth that our God is good.
I hope this Thanksgiving you recognize the small ways the Lord has revealed Himself to you and that you see His hand at work in your life. Give thanks, my friends. We have MUCH to be thankful for.