1. Being the week of our anniversary, the greatest thing that stands out to me this week is gratitude for my hubby. I am incredibly grateful for our 14 years of marriage and blessed to have had Drake in my life for 17 years now. As he said in my anniversary card yesterday, “We may never have an explanation of why life has been as challenging for us as it has been, but we trust in One whose love is bigger and deeper than any darkness that we’ve walked through and fall to our knees in gratitude for the blessing of our life together and the Grace that has upheld us.” I am thankful to be tied to such a faithful, honorable, and genuinely kind-hearted man!
2. As Jessie was riding her bike to Starbucks this week, I was acutely aware of all the wonderful and unexpected gifts people have given Jessie and so incredibly touched by the love and care people have shown for her.
The bicycle, basket, doll, blanket, bell, helmet, her clothes, boots…all gifts!
3. Grateful for my friend, Kelly, that I have known since Jr. High. We got together on Friday and I was reminded what a gift it is to have a friend living nearby that I have known much of my life. Because I do not live in the area where I grew up, few of my local relationships have the history of long-term friendship. But I have a lot of history with Kelly (who lives less than 10 miles away): we played youth basketball together, went to church together in high school, double-dated for the prom, she was a candle-lighter in my wedding, we worked together at Biola, she and her husband Craig spoke at Jud’s memorial service, and it is a gift that we continue to share life together. Our relationship has gone through different seasons but I have found this most recent season to be the richest thus far.
4. Grateful for the conversation I had Saturday night with my friend, Laura, and her honest seeking. I was challenged and sharpened by our time together, feeling solidarity in our questions, while also being able to laugh together.
5. It is a very little thing, but I am grateful that my ice tea refills at Starbucks are now free!
6. Grateful for my new friend, Cristina, and the chance to sip tea together on Monday. I am humbled by the manner in which she is constantly thinking of ways she can use her gifts and talents to share Judson’s story. Her support is a HUGE gift!
7. Grateful to the anonymous person in our church who offered us a generous, thoughtful gift yesterday.
8. Grateful for the loving, compassionate hug I received from a stranger yesterday.
Thank you, Lord, for all these blessings and more!