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Prayer For Week of May 28 — Count Your Blessings

May 28, 2012
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The fact that being grateful is important has almost become a cliche.  We apply a layer of “thank you Lord” over everything like a big blanket to cover everything and everyone.  We teach our children to pray at meals, “Thank you for this food, bless it to the nourishment of our bodies, Amen.”  And then we say, “Ew, I don’t like peas.”

“Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.”

(Hymn by Johnson Oatman, Jr.)

It’s finally (FINALLY!) clicking with me that it is the “name them one by one” part that is the key to gratefulness.  It’s not so much a sweeping, “thank you, God, for everything” as it is “thank you, God, for every little thing.”  It’s the listing of blessings–the smell of my baby’s breath, the warmth of the sun of my face, the sound of my husbands voice asking me what’s for dinner.  It’s every. little. thing.

Shoe polish on white canvas. This is the sign that hangs in my sister’s living room. I love it.

This kind of gratefulness multiplies grace in our lives and robs the Enemy of his power over our minds and hearts.  It turns healing into wholeness.  It turns this minute into eternity.  It turns what we have into enough.  Life is truly full of millions of tiny miracles that I don’t deserve but that I enjoy anyway.  All these small miraculous things that are mercy poured out to someone like me–who is a grace thief every day.  I forget.  I do.  I take for granted that my little girl smells like lavender and milk and that my husband gets to go to work that he enjoys and that my friends love me in spite of (or maybe because of?) my flaws.  I get to grow older, each minute and each day–a blessing not everyone gets to enjoy.

Today, my prayer time is a list of gratefulness to a benevolent Heavenly Father who daily loads us with benefits.

 

Thank you, Lord, for my wellies that are floral pink so that I can keep my feet dry and pretty when I’m in the garden.  Thank you for the itty-bitty watermelon that is growing on the vine.  It gives me hope.  Thank you for the kefir with chia seeds and fresh strawberries.  I feel nourished.  Thank you for the noise my children are making at this very moment dumping out their legos all over the floor.  And thanks for later when we get to clean them up.  Thank you that my kids still call me Mommy and not just Mom.  Thank you for sloppy joes, summer pies, Jesus Culture on Pandora, hardwood floors, and the picnic we will have later at the park.  I will try to remember and return thanks.

“Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, every doubt will fly,
And you will keep singing as the days go by.”

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