Our book club is reading Ann VosKamp’s book, One Thousand Gifts.
Ann’s writing style is incredibly poetic making her book equally pleasurable and equally difficult. I find my level of enjoyment is linked to my current frame of mind while reading. Despite this love/hate relationship with incomplete sentences and vivid imagery, I find her refreshingly different. She writes as she thinks. She writes as she feels. Reading her words is like looking out at the world through someone else’s eyes.
There were many sentences that jumped off the pages and lingered with me. I wrestled with phrases that awakened a desperation to live a life of thanks to God –desperate to honor Him in my thoughts, in my actions, and in how I serve my family.
“I can count each task a gift, pure eucharisteo. Grace! This work — the thousand endless jobs — they each give the opportunity for one to become the gift, a thousand times over! (p 200)”
This thought, this idea, that I can become the gift, has slowly changed the way I move through the day. The clothes rotating from the hamper to the washer to the clothes line in an endless cycle of work are now opportunities to minister to my family. The dishes swish through the suds completing the continuous circle from cupboard to table to sink. They transform chores into service. I do it all because I love my family, but it is more than that. I do it because I love my Lord.
This season of life, this day, this challenge, this task, this moment – this is my ministry bequeathed from God for the purpose of His glory. I sweep the same wooden planks collecting new dust, walk the same worn path to and from school, wipe the same little mouths and noses as a purposeful act of adoration and worship to HIM.
As Ann says, God has called me to do thanks. That my life should become the very blessing I have received. Right now that includes completing my tasks with joy, thankful for the children that require my care, thankful for the sturdy walls that cocoon us, thankful for the healthy food that requires daily preparation. Thanksliving indeed.
721. Waiting for it 722. Living on a budget 723. Court Dates 724. Anticipating the celebration 725. Glass tile 726. How the light reflects off the surface 727. Observation days at school 728. Having a friend over 729. Dinner guests 730. Warm baths 731. Lasagna 732. Bread makers and oven timers 733. School mates and playdates 734. Anticipating where God might use you next 735. Arriving home 736. Dishwashers 737. New DVD players 738. 50608 words 739. Second vehicles 740. Hats and mittens 741. Involved family 742. Team efforts 743. Christmas gatherings 744. New traditions 745. Meaningful gifts 746. Proclaiming God’s Word 747. Boldness 748. Bargains 749. Holiday plans 750. The first sweet smile 751. First snowfall 752. A roaring fire 753. Coupons 754. Cookies warm from the oven 755. Homemade bread 756. Hearing my son tell his friend how God is always with us 757. Gifts in a jar 758. Cookie exchanges 759. Gingerbread 760. Seasonal celebrations 761. Gift wrapping 762. Sacrificial love 763. Mornings spent baking 764. Projects coming together 765. Decorating for Christmas 766. Stockings by the mantel 767. Squeals of excitement decorating the tree 768. Playful sounds from the playroom 769. Katie playing simple Christmas songs on the piano 770. Happy kids 771. When passions and giftedness merge 772. Serving with joy 773. Satisfaction with now 774. Renewed passion 775. Confirmed callings 776. Responding properly 777. The birth of my Saviour 778. Those that stand in the gap 779. New baby boys 780. Afternoon tea 781. Sound proof playrooms 782. Executive decisions 783. Routine 784. Health 785. Warm outer wear 786. New computer 787. Sunshine on the coldest days 788. 40th birthday parties 789. Weekends away 790. A store standing behind its product 791. Cost saving budget cuts that work 792. Possibilities 793. A houseful of happy kids 794. Revelation from God 795. Picking up an old study again 796. Believing God for great things 797. Heat 798. Finally getting it 799. Kevin 800. Loud silence 801. A larger entrance way 802. Connecting with others 803. More dinner guests 804. Meeting the neighbours 805. A God who honors his covenants 806. Belief 807. Second helpings 808. Simple prayers 809. A child’s faith 810. Desire for God 811. Little off-key voices 812. Beautiful lyrics 813. Thomas’ great big book of engines 814. Confessions of faith 815. Learning to wait 816. Choosing to respond properly despite not feeling it 817. Cleanliness 818. Figuring it out 819. New assignments 820. Kate’s favorite song – Beautiful for Me