Heart in the Clouds

Friday, January 14, 2011

Gratitudes 2011 - #2

It's still snowing. Yes, it's cold and you know how I don't like snow, but I am actually starting to appreciate it. Not sure why. Maybe it's because I've been thinking about the object lesson associated with snowflakes...you know, the one about how everyone is unique and beautiful in their own way. Yeah, that one.

Well, then I realized that perhaps by creating snowflakes, God also wanted to give us a glimpse into himself. Maybe he wants us to remember what he's capable of. Maybe he wants us to think about the fact that we'll never be able to know him fully because there are so many different facets to His personality. All we can do is watch in wonder and wait for more.

Yesterday, just for fun, I was taking photos of the snowflakes. Sometimes there's a certain type of snow that falls where you can actually see the crystals in each snowflake. That's what we had yesterday--the big, fat, fluffy ones. They were beautiful, every single one. Even the ones that weren't "perfect", which was pretty much all of them. I guess there's a lot you can learn from a teeny, tiny snowflake, isn't there?

Think about it.

Today, I'm grateful for...

My husband. Yes, I'm STILL thankful that he's laid off. We've had a lot of family fun, and I can see his relationship with the boys is growing even more. It makes me happy to see them play together and laugh...even though I hate Nerf guns.

Cyber school. One of the best decisions I ever made, albeit one of the hardest decisions in the follow-through, was taking my son, Liam, out of elementary school and choosing to teach him at home. I never thought I'd be one of "those" people. Hee hee...I've seen his brain blossom. I've seen him learn things he never would have learned in school. Cyber school is also nice because not everything relies on the parent. I don't have to do lesson plans. I don't have to buy materials. It's all supplied, and then some! AND IT'S FREE! Yeah. I'm so thankful that God planted the idea in my head because it's not something I would have immediately thought of. God knows what our kids need and every kid is different...kind of like a snowflake, ya know? :)

Using my brain. I've kind of let my mind go to mush in the last few years. I don't make a lot of time to read, even though I go through reading sprees where I can't get enough of books. I don't get much in the way of intellectual discussion or debate, except through The Debate Kittens (who, by the way, are all awesome women). I guess I have I have let myself go a bit in the brain department. So having more opportunities to stretch my noggin recently has been really nice...and incredibly difficult.

Coffee. Yep, it's the little things.

Remembering that God is always at work in my life. You know how you get to a place, now and then, where you kind of feel like you're hidden somehow...that's what I've been feeling. I'm learning that there are times where God "hides" us. Maybe it's because he's preparing us for something. Maybe it's because he is giving us emotional recovery time or giving us a chance to put our feet up. Maybe it's happening so that we can be sure that when a door opens, it wasn't by our own hand. I don't know WHY I feel "hidden" right now, but I know that God's stirring the pot. :)

The Steelers. Yes, football is one of the things that helps to keep me sane in the mid-winter season. Don't roll your eyes at me, people! I can be grateful for football if I want to be. So there (crosses arms in a huff)! Once we win the Super Bowl (again), I'm going to have to get into hockey. I like hockey right now, but I know I'm going to need my sports fix once football is over.

Not having to act spiritual. My mom wrote a book quite a few years back called, "I'm So Tired of Acting Spiritual". I HATE when I'm in a situation where I feel like I have to act spiritual, when God really only calls us to be ourselves, to love Him and to love our neighbor. I've been in fewer and fewer situations like that as time as gone on (probably because I've learned how to avoid them). Over time, it's dawned on me that God doesn't care how spiritual we act. He can see right through our facades. He loves us for who we are, so we need to get comfortable with that person inside of us that he loves so much. He doesn't love our attempts at appearing holy or how we try to gain approval based on what we do. The more we know about him, the less we will try to hide behind fake spirituality. Just be yourself. God loves you as you are.

I hope that you remember today that you can never get bored with God. There's always something new to learn about Him. I hope you know that he knows you and loves you just the way you are, so you now have no excuse not to love yourself. If the God of the universe (who, by the way, created every living thing), thinks you're amazing...well, that means you're pretty amazing! There is something valuable inside of you that nobody else has. Something only you have to share with the world. God sees that piece of rock in there, and he's more than able to coax it to the surface, cut it, polish it and make something beautiful out of it.

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