What you do in your house is worth as much as if you did it up in heaven for our Lord God. We should accustom ourselves to think of our position and work as sacred and well-pleasing to God, not on account of the position and work, but on account of the word and faith from which the obedience and the work flow. ~ Martin Luther

Monday, August 03, 2009

Gifts and Gratitude

It's been an ugly, ugly weekend. So ugly, it was hard to see anything BUT the ugly; to think of anything BUT the depressing.

Sometimes a change in perspective is a painful thing to do...it can be hard work. Sometimes digging yourself out of despair is too exhausting and curling yourself away from it all seems the only (easy) way out. ALWAYS, that work is worth it though.

holy experience

This is me, only on the second week of the 1,000 gifts, Gratitude Monday, floundering and flailing, forcing myself to find the beautiful in the ugly, the gifts in the given. The harder I work at finding it, the more that I see.

12 :: Ugly: Empty gas gauge-as bone dry as the "gas money envelope" The beautiful: A husband who, uncharacteristically, takes the long way home from church.

13 :: Ugly: the pit in my stomach, the empty stare of my eyes, and the quiet of my usually bubbly mouth. Beautiful: the teasing and playfulness of husband causing eruptions of laughter, when I needed it most

14 :: Ugly: A bed on the side of the road, stained up, splattered, dusty and old-but free for the taking. Beautiful: a three year old Panda who feels like a very big boy

15 :: Two nights (in a row) of bed-wetting (from two different children) Beautiful: Windblown sheets on a sunny day

16 ::
Ugly: money always being spoken for, never an opportunity to splurge Beautiful: credit card paid off last month, our first month of no credit card payments. Freedom! THAT'S a beautiful thing!

17: Ugly: old, dirty dead-bug filled jars in crusty cardboard Beautiful: very necessary canning jars on the cheap, that will be more than beautiful when filled

18: Ugly: brown splotched pea pods Beautiful : peas plucked from their shells by a set of big hands and two sets of small ones. All together, happily working side by side.

19 :: Ugly: Plastic bottles, disposable containers, garbage littering the world, laying in wait for future generations. Such a disposable, wasteful culture. Beautiful: weaving plastic bottles around metal hooks and making warmth.

20 :: Ugly: holey plants, eaten and being eaten. Beautiful: metallic colors clutching fiercely~ tickling fingertips and children

Once I begin looking for the beautiful in the ugly, the gifts in the given, I begin to see the beauty without noticing UGLY at all.

A few, just plain beautiful...gifts, unwrapped daily

21 :: a computer to figure out how cook pattypan squash (?!?!) because I have PLENTY of it.

22 :: visits with good friends under the moon and candles

23 :: a scene from my own childhood~ little, lanky girl surrounded by a sea of school supplies. Just admiring, fingering, and anticipating. and

24 :: a CVS and TARGET who are giving me more than ample school supplies for free or pennies, seeking out the ad each week has become a real highlight for me!

25 :: Books!~ Abe Lincoln had to walk many miles to borrow a single book to read, and we have oodles at our fingertips; under our own roof, the roof of our library, and the online canopy of inter-library loans. All free for the taking.


Amos said...

I understand ugly. Thanks for the reminder to look beyond that and see the beautiful and just be THANKFUL.


...they call me mommy... said...

That was me...my hubby was signed it! :P

deb said...

okay... this was absolutely beautiful.
I am looking forward to reading more of you.. you see
and that pile of school supplies,
the ugly corner of my still little girl heart is so jealous!

thank you

Anonymous said...

I loved your post. We have had a hard journey to financial freedom. We paid off $50 000 in credit card debt. It feels so great to not be in bondage!

Angie said...

I love you how you contrast and compared!! What a great what to think of the beautiful things!!!

No gas-relate
No money-relate
make things from scratch- beautiful!

Your Sister in Christ

Anonymous said...

Meet the Lord in the morning for His Word. I am in the same ugly as you and so brokenhearted. The enemy tries to steal our lives away from our families and our Lord. God is faithful to wake me after a hard night with teething number 8 baby and this exhausted mother is touched by the Lord even in my utter wretchedness.

Charree said...

I really like this post. You are such a creative and encouraging writer. Thanks for the perspective.

Have a blessed day!

Anonymous said...

This post is very beautiful! I am so blessed to read your blog, as I am seeing a LOT of ugly myself lately. Thanks for encouraging me see the beautiful when it seems so hidden sometimes. It seems we just need to look a little harder as the Lord looks at the beautiful he sees in us. :)

Bonnie said...

Look how much more beautiful the beautiful is, in the face of the ugly. Gods cushion of mercy, and love gifts to you, simple as they may be.

Anonymous said...


This post takes my breath away. You have such a gift of expression and I, for one, am so thankful that you use this God-given gift to edify others. What a blessing you are!



Anonymous said...

I am so inspired by your perspective. Your attitude is so admirable.