I awoke on Friday morning refreshed and ready for the day. My mood quickly changed in the time it took for me to turn on the news (I love to watch the Friday concerts on the Today Show) and see the tragedy that had taken place in Colorado. My heart broke for the people who had lost loved ones. For the people who lost their lives. For the people who felt guilt and remorse for having survived while others did not. It caused me to do a lot of soul searching in my own personal life and remember what was important, what mattered more than anything else and what I take for granted. I quickly came to the realization that despite some of the ups and downs, I am blessed in life. I thought I would give myself the opportunity to express the things in life that I am grateful for and encourage each of you to do the same.
*A relationship with my Lord and Savior- I am a grateful believer in Jesus Christ. He saved my life when I didn’t even know it needed saving and when I finally did realize it, He accepted me with open arms. I didn’t have to do anything more than admit that I was a sinner (and still am), believe that He died on the cross for me, and choose to live a life following Him. I would like to invite any of you who do not know Jesus as your personal Savior to consider doing so. I am always open and available to talk and would love to be here for any of you that need me. One thing I would like to make clear is that God loves and forgives us no matter what we have done. There is no sin that can separate us from the love of Christ once we choose to have Him as a part of our lives. John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only son, that whoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life.
*A loving and caring husband- I am beyond grateful to not only be married, but to have an amazing husband. Is he perfect? No. Was he created just for me? Yes! I love him more than I could have ever imagined and realize that what we have is truly special. There are so many couples who go through life and never experience love like we have been able to experience. I think a huge part of this comes from the example God set for us in Ephesians 5:22-33. He works hard to love me like Christ loved the church (being us- Jesus gave His very life for us) and words cannot express how grateful I am for the love He shows me and the example He is setting for Emma to find in her future spouse.
*An amazing daughter- despite the struggles we had to conceive her, the bottom line is we did. We were able to not only get pregnant but have a beautiful, precious, healthy daughter and Emma is the light of our world. She is the best example I have ever been given when it comes to experiencing the love that Christ has for me. God loves me because I am His child. I did nothing to earn His love and yet He loves me and cares for me despite this. I cannot imagine life without Emma and I am so thankful that God allowed us to be Emma’s parents.
*A wonderful family- a lot of times I hear horror stories about families and how difficult they are. Ours is certainly far from perfect, but there is a lot of love and forgiveness in ours that makes things work. From my parents, to JR’s parents, to our siblings, we are blessed to have one another. We spend a lot of time together and they love Emma as if she was their own. Not many families have the bond we are blessed to have with ours and despite our differences, we are able to find love in the midst of it all. This even includes our amazing puppy, Allie. She gives us complete and unconditional love and it doesn’t matter if she has seen us in 5 minutes or 5 days.
*Fantastic friends- we are blessed with more friends than we can name. We are able to look back at moments in our life and cannot believe how many people we’ve had love us. We have been able to have friends in our lives that have been with us throughout all the ups and downs we have gone through and have loved us through them. They have cried with us in times of sadness, prayed with us in times of need, and rejoiced with us in times of happiness. We could never name everyone so we just owe a great, big THANK YOU to all our friends who have loved us along the way and pray we can be the same friends in return.
*A great job- JR and I both are blessed with the ability to work at our church, Highlands Fellowship. We work among friends and fellow believers in Christ and wouldn’t have it any other way. Highlands is a church that loves people where they are and who they are. No one is expected to be perfect and all people are loved despite what they’ve been through- it’s such a true example of what and who Christ is. We are just a bunch of imperfect people serving a perfectly amazing, loving, caring, and forgiving God. Wow! So blessed.
What are you grateful for today?