changing my life one page at a time…

I came across this book while browsing on Amazon.  I read the ‘look inside’ excerpt and then next thing I knew it was in my shopping cart about the be purchased.

The inside cover reads, “A beautifully practical guide to living a life of joy, One Thousand Gifts invites you to wake up to God’s everyday blessings. As Voskamp discovered, in giving thanks for the life she already had, she found the life she’d always wanted.” This book is SO good… you should get it.

Have you ever seen the book, 1000 Places To See Before You Die? Honesly, I’d love to go see each one of those places, but for what? To say that I have traveled across the ocean and experienced wonder? To say that I’ve seen beauty in a far away place? Why can’t I find beauty right here… right now… at 6:53am as I sit at the kitchen table and write this?

But how do I find beauty and joy in the midst of the daunting pile of clothes in the other room, or the bags that need to be packed, or the lingering “what’s next?” question that is stressing me out, or just the normal day-to-day routine? What is God providing here and now?

Eucharisteo.

It’s Greek and it means thanksgiving. The derivative of the word is chara, which means joy. Every time Jesus was faced with lack, He gave thanks. Even on the night before his death when he was betrayed, he broke bread and gave thanks. But for what? What is there to be thankful for when I’m lacking?

But wait. Am I really lacking or am I just failing to look at the abundance?

The reason this book jumped out at me is because I’m guilty of the later. Failing to look at the abundance in my life has become second nature. It’s a habit that I never knew was at the root of my dissatisfaction, frustration and discontent. So what now?

“A nail is drive out by another nail; habit is overcome by habit” said Erasmus, contemporary and admirer of Martin Luther {from: Treasure of Spiritual Wisdom}. And so, I dare you to join me. Join me in what Ann Voskamp calls, “a dare to live fully right where you are”. With our pen as the hammer to drive out the nails of discontent, let’s list 1000 gifts. 1000 things to be thankful for. And I’m not talking about broad, vague things like: my house, food, my family… ect,  but things that have been overlooked and gulped up and glanced over. Things like mail in the mailbox, the beautiful color of the peaches piled high in my bowl, the delicious hot mug of hazelnut coffee, clean sheets smelling like wind… you get the idea. It’s so simple, yet life changing. I’ve been doing this for a few days and it’s changed my perspective so drastically I wish I had done it sooner.  I find that I wake up looking for the abundance instead of focusing on the lack. I also got to buy a new journal. I love journals.

So, get this book. It’s amazing. And check out the author’s blog. It’s also amazing.

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7 thoughts on “changing my life one page at a time…

  1. i LOVE this and totally agree with you! i’ve been bringing our “gravy” journal with me everywhere now (since we talked about that book) and i’m determined to write it in, all the time. i’m even making my mom a new journal for the new year and i want to give it to her with that book. thank you for sharing. i am accepting your challenge to join you 🙂

  2. Thanks Jess! I’m so inspired by you and will get this book! I just read this morning in The Shattered Lantern about the need for “wonder” and how we can enter in only when “childlike”. “Little children perceive the world as laden with beauty…” Rolheiser says. He also quotes a poem… “And things grow new though I grow old…” There is abundance everywhere, we just need eyes to see it.

  3. SUCH an amazing book…she has such a gift for words. I’ve been following her blog for quite a while and pre-ordered the book as soon as it was out! I read it through way too quickly the first time and I need to go back and really slow down and digest it…so much there.

  4. Hi, I am a random subscriber who stumbled on your blog one day when it came up on my freshly pressed page. I have been so blessed by reading your words, your stories, your adventures, your questions that I feel echo my own in so many ways. My husband and I are in a similar season of seeking a God-sized adventure, but perhaps being asked to wait and to be deeply grateful in the every day. My mom sent me this book a few weeks ago and my latest post was about some of these things. About seizing the gifts of each day. Anyway, just wanted to say hi and that I love your blog and appreciate what you have to say. : )

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