Today, though I am behind, I just want to take this chance to express gratitude for my four children.
Day 5: I am thankful for my firstborn, because it is he who made me a mother for the first time. It is he who has had to endure the first and worst of my parenting mistakes. It is he who will always be the guinea pig of the family. It is he who is teaching me so much, though I feel like I am having trouble learning what I am supposed to learn. On the verge of young manhood, I am perplexed and nervous about the next phase in his life. I have made so many mistakes already, and I fear the worst are to come. So, I thank God for this gift of a firstborn son, who loves me, and who still needs me to be the best mother I can be, and who forgives me so readily when I ask him. I am grateful for his affectionate, loving nature, and I pray I can nurture that part of him over the next few years, and help shape him into a loving and gentle man.
Day 6: I am thankful for my firstborn daughter, who has shown so much self-discipline lately. I am certain (because I asked her) that it stems from the trouble she sees her siblings getting into, and she wants a different path for herself. Still, little does she know that this self-discipline is exactly the quality she will need to achieve whatever God sets before her in life. So, I am thankful for this characteristic in her. She is so much better than I was at her age. I am thankful that she is a bit of a mystery to me, and that I have to work to bring her heart to the surface, where I can know her better. I am thankful that I must open my eyes and ears more purposefully with her, otherwise I would miss who she is.
Day 7: I am thankful for my redheaded third-born. High-strung and sensitive, this one is a great challenge to me as well. It seems that she will not capitulate to anything without first fighting it out in some form or fashion. She is quick to anger, but quick to repentance and grace as well. She has high highs, and her lows plunge her into the “depths of despair,” much like my own personal Anne Shirley. She is a puzzle, longing for more freedom than she is ready for. She is the one teaching me patience and grace. To be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry. I am thankful for her refining personality, and the strength I can see growing in her, that will allow her to stand firm among giants, in spite of her small stature.
Day 8: I am thankful for my youngest, of the long lashes, brown eyes, and freckled little-boy face. That child has taught me, more than any of them, that not all children are the same. Teaching him to read has been one of my biggest parenting challenges, but I managed it. His brain just works so very differently than any of the others, that I marvel. Sometimes, I wonder if I am really the right mother for him, but he helps me to remember that God chose me specifically for him. There can be no better mother for this child, in spite of appearances. He has taught me to trust that God makes no mistakes in the paths he sets before his children, and that I can, indeed, do “all things” through Christ who strengthens me.
Day 9: I am thankful that the virus going through our house the past few days is very short-lived, so that we can each just move on. I am thankful that Saturday was incredibly productive for me, so that I could take a true day of rest on Sunday, though it meant taking a rain-check on a much-needed outing with one of my dearest friends. Perfect timing, stomach bug. Perfect. (Note: there really should be a sarcasm font…) This illness running through the house is teaching me to be thankful in everything. It also taught me not to let these things derail me quite so much as they used to. To instead just roll with it, and be grateful for strong immune systems.
God is good. All the time.
And I’m thankful today.
Pardon any typos, I don’t have time to proofread this morning, as I do need to get started on our homeschool day, like, two hours ago…but I couldn’t let the morning pass without acknowledging the goodness of God.
What are you thankful for today?
Grace & Peace,