As Thanksgiving fades out and the next season begins, I find myself thinking about the tenderizing effect this period of gratitude can have on my spirit, if I allow it. I mean truly allow it by focusing on nothing but the blessings and believing everything is blessing. We are encouraged in Romans 5 to “count it all joy” even when our hearts are hurting because suffering produces perseverance; perseverance character; and character hope. And there ain’t no shame in hope because hope is the conduit for God’s Love to be poured into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, who was given to us. Think about that for a moment … THE Holy flippin’ Spirit was given to us as a gift and is standing ready, waiting, to pour THE God’s Love into our tiny little human hearts.
Tenderizing can be defined as the process of making something softer by preparing it in a particular way. All those things in Romans 5 are meant to and can tenderize our hearts if we choose to remain soft and open and refuse to allow the hurt to close us off or harden ourselves against the possibility of pain. Eucharistia – the giving of thanks, the rekindling of amazement, and following the “crumbs to the angels” yield a vessel prepared for filling with Love and Peace. I think. I believe. I hope.
These are a few things for which we, in The Blue House, have found ourselves grateful this week. My eucharistia …
Cozy slippers and little furry dogs, my sweet daughter and her sweet feet, speckled sunshine on wood floors, a warm fire on a chilly day, twinkle lights, precious and enduring friendship, the uncompromising love of family, autumn leaves raining down from trees and swirling up again behind car bumpers puffing vapor from pipes, coffee with peppermint chocolate creamer, kefir and Jeffir and all his many sweetnesses, crockpots, spaghetti squash, cake made from scratch and eaten warm from the oven before dinner, warm hands, tender trusting hearts, strong comforting hugs, God’s Grace and its sufficiency and the strength to rise every time I fall, unconditional Love, candlelight, freedom, and Christ within me.
Sweet daughter’s eucharistia …
Mommy, dogs, God, Jesus, warm beds, Buttercup, life, food, strength, Love, happiness, and friendship.
What about you? Let’s lift each other up by counting it all joy together.