Monday, July 01, 2013

stop & consider.

Happy July, y'all! There's something about the start of a new month that gets me excited. I really love newness in general. (The hubs would probably have some clever comment to interject right now, but I'm not talking materialistically at the moment!) The start of new seasons, beginning a new week, beautiful sunrises that mark a new day full of new mercies, the fresh new page of your planner that is waiting to be filled with events and happenings. This is the newness I love. A fresh start. Another chance to do better than the day, week, or month before.

the beginning of life: beautiful killdeer eggs
another "new" start: our herb garden is sprouting!
Throughout the "7" experience I have been trying to be more intentional about my gratitude-- to others, and most importantly, to God. In this fast paced, always connected world, it is so easy to overlook those  simple moments that really mean so much. This weekend Dustin and I were able to get home for a quick visit. Although we didn't get to visit everyone as we would have liked, we did have some special moments with some of our families. My mom and I got manicures-- one of our favorite special treats. We had supper with our parents and Dustin's brothers and I believe the entire restaurant was educated on the "awesomeness" of Lebron James! We celebrated Father's Day with my dad and granddaddy, and were able to visit with family members that aren't always in town when we are. When you sit down around the table with people you love and share stories, memories, and laughter-- life is good. We were able to spend some time with Dustin's grandparents as well. Dustin and his papa talked about guns, combines, and all kinds of manly, guy stuff and y'all I loved being right there with them. I couldn't tell you a single thing they said, because it was all way over my blonde head but I was so thankful to just experience that sweet moment between a grandson and his papa. I always tell Dustin I could listen to his papa read the phonebook because he just has one of those awesome narrator voices. Even though I didn't really contribute much to the conversation, I was so glad to witness it. Family time is the best time in my book.

I have a DaySpring Planner and my favorite part of it is that each week has a verse at the bottom of the page. I love the constant reminders from scripture each time I check my schedule or add something to it.  One of the verses that has stuck with me is: Stop and consider God's wonders {Job 37:14}. The context of the verse is that Elihu, a young man, is giving some words of wisdom to Job, a man who faced many tests and trials. But how applicable is this verse regardless of whether we are low in the valleys of life, or high on the mountain tops? As I said earlier, we are in a fast paced, connected world. Which can be wonderful at times, but don't you think that there's a chance we are missing out on blessings that we are given because we are too busy updating our Facebook status or uploading a photo on Instagram that we spent 5 minutes editing on A Beautiful Mess? *I am totally speaking to myself right now because I am so guilty of having my iPhone attached to my hand at all times. And by the way, I think social media is fabulous but I think we can miss out on those face-to-face relationships because we are glued to a tiny touchscreen.*

So my goal this month is to stop and consider God's wonders, and then thank Him for them. Ann Voskamp, a Christian author and blogger, has a Joy Dare, where you literally list 1000 gifts from God. There is even a free app where you can log photos of the gifts. While I am making an effort to be more connected face-to-face, I do appreciate this way to archive these gifts. I found an journal I hadn't used and plan to write them as well. I've mentioned before that I need double reminders! I love the greater awareness and appreciation for the beauty in the simple things.

my gratitude journal

So would you join me in aiming for an attitude of gratitude? God's blessings are all around us. We must only take the time to stop and consider

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