It's hard to believe that The Thankfulness Experiment ends tomorrow! What an amazing journey it's been! Tonight, after the boys went to bed, I read through the past 64 posts and was reminded of all the different ways God taught me about thankfulness. He taught me through nature... sunsets (Day 9), sunbeams (Day 31), rainbows (Day 47) , and how a tree's beauty was revealed when the sun shined on it (Day 11). God taught me about thankfulness through my sons... through their creativity (Day 35), teachable moments (Day 14) and my seven year olds enthusiasm about reading his Bible (Day 29). He taught me about thankfulness through my hubby... who pointed out that 1 Thessalonians 5:18 tells us to give thanks "in" all circumstances, not "for" all circumstances (Day 34).
God challenged me to put thankfulness into practice when I discovered my black dress was left in a hotel... two weeks after we checked out (Day 18) and when my toilet overflowed with sewage on a school morning (Day 30). Sometimes I chose thanksgiving, and other times I didn't. But through it all, God reminded me that He doesn't expect me to be perfect, which is a huge help for this perfectionist gal!
God has reminded me that I need to wear thankfulness like my favorite outfit (Day 36 & 44) and that there are costs when we aren't thankful (Day 39). And God opened my eyes to the amazing message of hope this Christmas as I experienced Christmas songs through the lens of thanksgiving (Day 46 - 55).
God brought me to tears tonight as I reflected on Him doing immeasurably more with this experiment as over 1,000 reasons filled my inbox today. It was too much for me to take in. As I sat down to review the posts and type tonight's blog, I started with tears of thankfulness and by journaling about how God is at work behind the scenes of this experiment. I am truly blessed and so thankful that He invited me start this blog.
Psalm 4:7-8 capture some of my emotions tonight...
You have filled my heart with greater joy than when their grain and new wine abound. I will lie down in peace, for You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.
I am so thankful for each of you. Twenty-eight people posted thankful lists today... and the numbers on the lists went well beyond 5 reasons. Thank you for choosing thanksgiving. Thank you for sharing what God is doing in your life. Thank you for taking the time to type up hundreds of reasons... and if the technology didn't cooperate, then you sent me an email to make sure your reasons counted. Wow - I can only shake my head in wonder at God providing the reasons and helping 10,000 become a realistic goal.
For the first time ever, I got to hang two ornaments on the Thankfulness Tree today... one for hitting 8,000 and one for hitting 8,500. And we are only 39 reasons away from reaching 9,000. Incredible! Our God is an awesome God. (Sorry... still having issues with uploading the picture. Gotta get some help from my hubby tomorrow.)
My heart is full tonight... full of thankfulness and joy at the love and support God is giving me through each and every reason you have posted over the past 65 days. Thank you for joining God in doing immeasurably more than I could ever ask or imagine with The Thankfulness Experiment(Ephesians 3:20).
Tonight, I am thankful for...
1. My pastor sending a note to my church family inviting everyone to help reach 10,000 reasons
2. My church family rallying around this experiment
3. So many thankful lists pouring in today
4. Friends listing 50, 100+ reasons for giving thanks
5. Getting to read all the ways that God is raining down blessings in each of our lives
6. God doing immeasurably more today
7. All the lessons God has taught me over the past 65 days
8. God faithfully giving me words each night
9. God never leaving me or forsaking me
10. Prayers of dear friends that have carried me through the past 65 days
12. God not expecting perfection from me
13. God's patience
14. God's forgiveness
15. The Holy Spirit that lives inside me
16. God revealing Himself through nature
17. Snuggle fest in bed this morning
18. Lunch out with my hubby and the boys on the last day of Winter Break
19. Mailing letters
20. Finding out that my Christmas Stamps are Forever stamps
21. No TV this afternoon
22. Boys entertaining themselves without TV time
23. Playing cards
24. Coloring together... yep, all three of us. I colored a girlie truck.
25. My three year old pointing out the truck I colored was for a girl because it was pink and purple
26. Not making the same mistake from Day 30 when I discovered my toilet was clogged
27. Properly using the plunger
28. Toilet unclogged without any sewage spilling on the floor
29. Learning from past mistakes
30. Having my past toilet mistake posted on this blog in case I ever need a reminder
31. Hearing 10,000 Reasons by Matt Redman on the radio two days in a row
32. Leftovers for dinner
33. Peanut Butter and crackers
35. Watching Madagascar 3 with both boys snuggled up next to me
36. Reading books to the boys this afternoon and giggling as we read them
37. Remembering to do a load of laundry this evening
38. God giving my hubby everything he needed for his talk tomorrow morning
39. My hubby's gift of teaching others
40. My hairdresser
41. A haircut that I like (this makes my hubby happy too... does this count for two?)
42. Catching up with a good friend today
43. Jesus and His sacrifice and His amazing love for us
Here's to 10,000 reasons... Only 1,039 to go...