Nothing like a holiday to awaken emotions. Good, bad, ugly, beautiful... they're all here in me.
Somehow I am overflowing with thanks today. It's Thanksgiving; we're sometimes forced to list our blessings or speak them aloud.
Amazingly, I don't have to be forced. Oh, I have reasons to be angry and questioning. And I do express those feelings, believe me. Those are real and necessary in the healing process.
I am full of sadness over my loss of little beauty, Anna Joy. But a genuine thankfulness has risen up in me as I reflect on all the blessings of my journey through her story. Like God prepped my heart and mind while I was sleeping last night.
This morning Matt told me to peek out our bedroom windows revealing the pink sunrise, bright over frosted rooftops. Like it was quietly asking, "Will you continue to hope?" It's a new day.
Not long after that sight, my precious beautiful son practically jumped through our bedroom doorway, announcing his welcome to the day. Enthusiasm beaming on his sleepy, but happy look.
God has blessed me abundantly, and I feel that fullness has brimmed and spilled over. I want to share these blessings with others. I want to shout the goodness of God - YES, even now, in presence of severe pain.
I am grateful for being drawn so close to Him that my every breath depends on His faithfulness. His grace saves me day after day.
* * *
There is no adequate way of expressing our thanks to all of you who have walked this journey with us this past year. Matt and I would like to send out two small words that carry huge meaning and sincerity for us.
They sometimes seem trivial and familiar. Please believe them, though. They come from our hearts wrapped in authenticity and humility.
We have often discussed how blessed we have been through the support we've received. Truly, we have been carried by God through YOU. Your prayers, your cards, your encouragement, your empathy, your hugs, your gifts...
We had these announcements printed this past spring and did our best to send out to those we could. There was no way we could have sent a tangible one to most of you... thousands of you who have cared and prayed.
So here is one for you. Imagine it was sent to your mailbox, hand-addressed.
There is always something for which to be thankful.
We celebrate that gift today. The gift of gratitude. The ABILITY to be thankful.
Even this... Even now?
Days of questioning. Weeks of heartache. Months of sickness. Year of hell meeting heaven.
Yes. Especially now.
I choose to look toward heaven.