Five Days of Gratitude

A long time ago, I started working on my list of 1,000 things for which I’m grateful after reading the wonderful Ann Voskamp’s book One Thousand Gifts. I admit that I haven’t cracked open that notebook in a while and never made it past about 300, but I do try to practice an attitude of gratitude and recommend that book to all of my friends.

Last week, another wonderful person challenged me to list three things for which I’m thankful  each day for five days on Facebook. That, I can do! Partly because I don’t want to forget them and partly because I haven’t blogged in a while, I wanted to repeat them here. Thank YOU for indulging me!

Day 1
1. A husband who loves me and has stood by me through 16 years of ups, downs, and in-betweens.

2. Three wonderful little boys who are growing too quickly. They amaze me every day and make me want to be a better person. I always wanted to be a mom but couldn’t have understood the deep love and heart-wrenching difficulties that come with it. I’m grateful every day for the honor.

3. Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior, best friend and king, bringer of peace, redemption, love, joy, purpose, fulfillment, and so much more. He’s alive, I hear His voice through His Word and His Spirit, and surrender to Him is the only way to find reconciliation to God. I wanted to “find myself,” find my life, and when I gave those to Him, I found all I needed and lost nothing worth keeping.

Day 2
1. So many wonderful friends. I look back over the years and am amazed at how much I’ve been blessed with trustworthy friends who love me unconditionally but tell me when I need to rethink my words or actions. I can’t imagine life without the friendship, laughter, advice, encouragement, and fellowship of my girl friends.

2. The Circle Maker — the Hebrew legend and the book by Mark Batterson. This is changing the way I think and pray and praise and dream. I’ve been challenged; my faith is growing; and I’m grateful to have friends walking alongside me, learning with me, and keeping me accountable to a 40-day prayer challenge.

3. Food, clean water, shelter, clothing — more than enough of all of these and money in the bank besides. Most of us take these things for granted every day, whereas most people in the world would gladly give an arm or a leg to be so rich. May I never forget this reality or lose sight of my responsibility in this world as one of the “privileged” minority.

Day 3
1. Music (a significant part of my life as long as I can remember, and I’m so grateful for the sacrifices my parents made to get lessons and instruments for me)

2. Growing up in Montana, one of the most beautiful places on earth

3. My parents, truly a gift from God … I can’t even imagine who or where I would be without them.

Day 4
1. My health

2. Essential oils and other natural solutions (like vitamins, clean food, chiropractic, exercise, and herbs) that complement my health and well-being in so many ways

3. The gentle reminders our bodies give us when it is time to take better care of ourselves. It is amazing how many of those subtle signs I pick up on since I’ve been pursuing natural health care options; I think I ignored or drugged them away before, and I feel more in tune with my physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health now than ever. I thank my Great Physician for His many gifts and for His healing touch when it is needed.

Day 5
1. My astounding team members. I could go on and on gushing about the amazing people who have chosen to join my team. I don’t know of a single person who joined expecting to make money or “do the business.” Every person enrolled because they wanted natural solutions for their health and their loved ones’ health. When they found that the oils worked, they couldn’t help sharing and giving and helping others. In the last year, more than 2,000 new people have joined me on this learning and growing adventure. Some are just using oils and others are making up the cost of their products, supplementing their income, or replacing their income. I’m very excited about the next few months and what this business is doing for my family, but I’m even more excited that I have more than 20 successful team members who are making between $1,000 and $8,000 per month doing something they love and sharing their passion. There are many more who are going to reach that mark this fall, and it is my honor to coach, mentor, and cheer on these ladies (and a few men). I try to keep up with them and most days fall quite short, but for some reason I got to be one of the first in my area to find out about pure, therapeutic products and business opportunity, and I hope I can help any and all who need this in their lives as much as I did. In some ways it’s hard to believe it has only been a year since I made a brave, scary, gut-wrenching decision to abandon one business on the hunch that another would work, but I knew then as I know now that I was meant to do this and to help others in this capacity. It is so fulfilling!

2. CrossRoad Academy, our little Christian home-school and the awesome responsibility and privilege that it is to be the “chief administrator.” It can be messy and hard and frustrating, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything. I love being the one to teach my children to read, answer their questions, help them wrestle through the difficult stuff, and remind them that God is the center and is our Strength in weakness. I love starting my day in worship and prayer with my 3 favorite little boys in the world and seeing their faces light up when they learn something new or discover they can do something they didn’t know they could. And I am so thankful for the other home-school families in my community who model, encourage, and pray.

3. Family. My adoptive parents, biological parents, siblings, in-laws, nephews and nieces, grandparents, friends who are like family, church family, upline family … I already mentioned my parents and girl friends and immediate family and team, but there so many wonderful people who bless my life and enrich it many, many ways. I love you all!

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