I keep a small notebook in my purse that is filled with lists. I need this notebook to keep my head on straight, and I love the feeling of crossing things off once I have completed them.
Here is a list of the lists in my notebook….:)
All the projects that need to be done around the house.
A grocery list – 2 actually, one for WinCo and one for Costco.
Miscellaneous household items needed list (i.e. cleats for Joel, water bottle for Leah, etc.)
To-do list for the week.
A list of appointments/phone calls I need to make.
A meal schedule for the coming week.
A list for children’s school work and due dates.
And finally – my list of Thanksgiving.
I started keeping this list one day when I was thinking about the great number of people who have been pouring into my life. The overflowing blessings I have been on the receiving end of. The selfless giving that has surrounded me in a very real way as we have adjusted to our new family/way of life.
Whenever something especially blesses my heart, I pull out my notebook and add to my list of Thanksgiving.
I have had a couple of rough days this week and so I decided to read over this list and remind myself of just how blessed I am.
Here are some excerpts….
*The swim instructor from Sun Oaks who offered my children free swim lessons.
*My neighbor Bob. He is a wonderful 86-year-old grandpa who is always puttering around outside. I have come home to potholes filled in on our driveway, a drainage ditch dug near our lawn, and new gravel to fill in the dirt patches on our road.
*My family – my mother-in-law and my mom are always willing to watch my 6 kiddos to give me a couple of hours to myself. And they actually enjoy it!
*The friends I have made from the members of Sun Oaks. These people come to take group exercise classes and they leave me with blessings – kind words, a gift card for shoes for my kids, a sweet note, a bag full of craft supplies, encouragement, affirmation.
*Dutch Brothers. Seriously. This is a blessing in my life.
*My dad who called and said he thought we would need a freezer in the garage to feed all these extra mouths. He gave me his credit card number and told me to go pick one out.
*A co-worker of Scott’s who then called and offered us part of a cow to fill that freezer.
*A friend who invited my family to dinner. She made homemade macaroni and cheese and chicken strips for the kids. She served us on china and used her linen napkins. She made us feel special. And like we weren’t a bother.
*The eye doctor who offered all six of my children free eye exams. Because we don’t have vision insurance. And did I mention that I have six kids? That would have been a BIG medical bill.
*The sweet lady who comes to my house every other week on my linen washing day. She re-makes all of my beds. Again, did I mention that I have six kids? Because that is A LOT of bed making!
*Another sweet lady who drops by every week or two just to check up on me and see what I need help with. One day she took care of my ironing pile. One day she hung up all of my laundry. One day she cleaned my kitchen counters.
*My friends who love on me and expect nothing in return. Because some days I just have nothing left to give.
*The Shasta Bible College students who spend an hour every week tutoring my children. And most importantly, the friend who coordinated this for me. She is a gem!
*The photographer who gifted my family our first-ever professional family pictures. Just take a look at the beautiful job she did!
I am going to stop there, although this is not every blessing that I have listed in my notebook. There are so many more!
As I have felt slightly defeated the last few days, and then as I looked over my list of blessings, a story from the book of Exodus came to mind. Moses was standing on a hill overlooking the battle below him. He held in his hands the staff of God. As long as Moses kept the staff raised in the air, the Israelites would win the battle. But as his arms grew tired and the staff lowered, the tide turned against them.
Moses’ arms soon became so tired he could no longer hold them up. So Aaron and Hur found a stone for him to sit on. Then they stood on each side of Moses, holding up his hands. Exodus 17:12
I am so thankful for you. You go out of your way to minister to me. You continually bless my family. You selflessly give of your time and your talents because you want to help. You hold up my hands.