I am not sure about you, but every year as we approach Thanksgiving, the thought of thankfulness is foremost on my mind. Over the past few years I have tried to be cognizant of all the blessings—big and small—that God has showered upon us, and give Him praise for each one.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 says, “Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.”
You may be thinking, “All circumstances. Seriously!? Good and bad, happy and sad, easy and difficult, big and small? Is God serious? Does He know what I am dealing with?” The answer is yes and yes! When He says “all,” he means “all.”
We are to be thankful in each and every circumstance of life, for within them He has placed unexpected blessings.
We often recognize and acknowledge the “big” blessings, for they are much easier to be thankful for. But what about the “small” blessings—those things we often take for granted? I have come to look at blessings much differently over the past few years. I find that the small blessings are what I am so incredibly thankful for. Let’s clarify “big” blessings versus “small” blessings. “Big” for me would be the house God allowed us to have that is fully equipped to meet Mark’s special needs. “Small” would be a close parking spot on a rainy day, sitting in the chair in Mark’s office on Saturday mornings and talking, or taking one of our grandchildren to Menchie’s Yogurt and sampling every flavor at least two to three times before declaring that we just cannot decide which one to get, then laughing and trying another. Small blessings are those unexpected, long lingering lunches with a friend, or snuggling up with a hot cup of Lazio chai tea in the winter. I was curious as to what young women would consider to be “small” blessings in their lives, so I asked them. This is what some said:
- One “small” thing I am thankful for is family dinners together. I treasure the times we are all around the table—talking, eating, and laughing together. We hardly ever discuss anything “major” and our meals are definitely not gourmet. But just talking about the highs and lows of our day can often lead to talking about spiritual truths and principles. It may seem like a small thing, but it is something I am so grateful for.
- I am thankful for diapers because when I’m frustrated with crying babies and patting their bottoms as hard as I can (which helps get some frustration out) they never feel it, nor do they know mommy is frustrated. It may sound crazy, but it really has been something I’m thankful for.
- I’m thankful for DVDs and portable DVD players. They give me so much relief when I’m trying to work. I know some people stay away from television and think it’s awful, but for us it’s been a life saver.
- As the mom of a boy, I am grateful for two bathrooms so that I never have to use “his toilet.” I do, however, still have to clean it nine times a day!
- Hot coffee, creamer (that’s still in date), five more minutes of sleep, random and unsought hugs and kisses from the little ones. A “good job” comment from the hubs!
- I am thankful for the small things like making a fort and having tickle parties with my kids. I also love when their daddy tells them a made-up story and their eyes fill with wonder as they listen.
- I am thankful for nurses to call with minor issues to ease a mommy’s heart.
- I’m thankful for sweet 4 a.m. feeding smiles. 🙂
- I am thankful for baths, grown-up conversations, other moms who don’t “have it all together” and freely talk about it, coffee, mentors, “kids eat free” dinners with other families, play dates, good weather for playing outside, and the GPS on my smart phone.
- A night of uninterrupted sleep!
- When my husband takes the kids to school leaving me with a “free” morning.
- A night of uninterrupted sleep!
- Swiffer mops that even my 5-year-old can use (may not be perfect, but it is better than nothing!)
- Laughter, especially in tough moments/times.
- The ability to breathe. I seem to take it for granted until sickness hits.
- Chocolate. Because sometimes you just need a bite!
- Christian radio continually reminds my heart to praise!
- NICU nurses, video monitors, gowns for easy night changing, baby smiles and giggles, for some pants to be fitting again, and naps!
- I’m thankful for hot water!
“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” James 1:17
Let’s thank God for the blessings (big and small) in our lives this Thanksgiving and each day after. Even in the midst of the storms of life, God is faithful to provide His children with “good gifts” along the way.
Now it is your turn! What “small” blessings are you most thankful for this year? Please share with us in the comments below!