God Smiles…

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“The gift list is thinking upon His goodness – and this, this pleases Him most! And profits my own soul and I am beginning, only beginning, to know it. If clinging to His goodness is the highest form of prayer, then this seeing His goodness with a pen, with a shutter, with a word of thanks, these really are the most sacred acts conceivable. The ones anyone can conceive, anywhere, in the midst of anything. Eucharisteo takes us into His love. ” Ann Voskamp, One Thousand Gifts, p. 61.

“All of these things we are listing in our thankful journals, they are all ways that God is showing us He loves us! Look at how long your list is! Look at how much He loves you!”

At the beginning of Lent I helped my children to get started on their own gift lists. I really felt like the Lord prompted me to try this with them, and now I know why.

I encourage the girls everyday, just whenever I think about it, to jot down something they love or something they are thankful for. With Caleb, I will just ask him every now and then and write down his items for him.

Every few days I gather the kids up, we all bring our journals to my bed or outside on the patio and we share a few items from our own gift lists. The kids have absolutely *loved* hearing items from my list, especially when it is something about them that I am thankful for! {grin}

“Count blessings and discover Who can be counted on.” Ann Voskamp, One Thousand Gifts, p. 151.

Here are a few from Hannah’s list:

  • the plants growing
  • swimming
  • eating lunch at church
  • eating cheesecake with Nana
  • penguins
  • my birthday
  • folding clothes with Nana
  • going to visit grandma
  • wearing a new dress
  • playing with Will outside

Here are a few from Emily’s list:

  • building at Lowe’s with daddy
  • planting flowers
  • swinging
  • my brother and sister
  • doing school with mommy
  • going out to eat
  • Nana and Papa
  • Kari Jobe songs
  • woodpeckers
  • painting

Here are a few from Caleb’s list:

  • Buddy
  • playing with Buddy
  • swimming
  • swinging
  • Buddy licking me
  • Katie coming over to play
  • swimming with Jacob and Mattie
  • playing outside with Will, Colin and Jack
  • banana with peanut butter
  • orange juice
  • pumpkin muffins

As you know, I have been keeping my gratitude list or “gift list” since September of 2009 on this blog. I have counted over 1500 gifts thus far…and am still counting. Grace after grace. Gift after gift. Moment after moment. And God keeps on giving. He keeps on showing me His love.

And this week, well He gave me a new gift as I listened to my children read to me from their lists. My heart just wanted to burst with joy as I listened to the little, everyday, simple pleasures that my children were thankful for. My prayers are being answered…God is growing in each of us a thankful heart.

“Be joyful always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

And, in that moment of joy, when my heart was so proud of my kids and so full of God’s joy…in that moment, I had a realization. If I am this happy over my children naming God’s gifts…just imagine God’s joy as I list my gifts each day. Just imagine.

I believe that as I’m naming His graces in my life, as I’m counting my blessings, as I’m giving Him the glory, that He smiles.

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  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08168494263698424081 Leslie

    Love this post! Love what you are doing with your kids too! I’m just reading the book now and may try to do this with mine too. Thanks for sharing.

    I’m sure God is smiling too!


  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13694089806217921117 Tina Hollenbeck

    Hi! I found you on the UBP this week and bookmarked you “for future reference.” :^) And now I just wanted to let you know that I’ve decided to follow you – and I look forward to getting to know you. ~ Tina (http://tinahollenbeck.blogspot.com)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/18366214414205646931 Shelly @ Life on the Wild Side

    Hi Candace! Popping over from Ann’s place. What a great idea to have your kids jot down their thankful lists too! I love that. Mine are a little older (teenagers) so it might be a little hard to get them to do that, but I love that you’re starting while they are young. What a great habit to instill in your kids.