The beginning of a new calendar year gives many people a sense of a fresh start; similar to a blank sheet of paper on which we craft stories anew. Or a clean slate which has yet to be marred and scarred by mistakes.
For most of us, we will continue doing what we have always done, but being just a smidge more keenly aware of what we do and why we do it, at least for the first few days of the year. Some of us will truly make changes and implement new habits in an effort to be better in some area of our lives than we are now.
I would like to welcome this year by reflecting on the blessings that I possess for which I often neglect to express gratitude.
These are my Blessings…Giving thanks for them anew…
Stars of brilliant light on a velvet, black sky and sight to see them. I’ve known blind people who can only imagine.
Sounds of a mountain stream cascading over rocks and ears to hear. I know the difficulty of speaking with your hands for those who cannot hear or speak.
Laughter. Losing your breath and laughing until your stomach hurts, even when there is much to cry about.
The bonds of friendship that began when two little girls promised to be Best Friends Forever! Precious in a world where loyalty is scarce.
The encouragement of people who love and accept me midst all of my shortcomings. Too many people feel truly alone on this planet.
A lovely home in a sub-division out of our simple league. Our first home was a one-bedroom apartment in a not-so-great part of town.
The touch of my husband’s leg under the blanket at night…so many people sleep alone while yearning for it not to be so.
Our son’s chubby hands even when fingernails are dirty from too much play…remembering when we had no son.
Our daughter’s bony arms, weakened by cerebral palsy, circling my neck in a hug; quiet lips saying “momma”…remembering those months of ventilation in the NICU when she could make no sounds and praying that I could just hear her little voice one time.
Parents who told me I could be anything I wanted to be and encouraged me to do my best. I’ve fostered too many children who have been beaten down emotionally by those who should be their biggest cheerleaders.
A house full of siblings who shared my childhood and transitioned into my dearest friends. Sadly many families are divided and relationships are severed with people who share blood.
Mentors, counselors, teachers, and pastors who have shaped my beliefs and taught me to search the Scriptures for truth. So many are lost and alone and need encouragement.
A church family that understands we are all “but dust.” I’ve been in judgmental, unforgiving congregations before and know the loneliness that brings. I so love my church family.
The celestial sounds of a congregation singing Silent Night and knowing an entire room of people have travelled to Bethlehem in their minds to see that babe in a manger.
The joy of holidays that bring warmth of handshakes and hugs and well wishes for a new year!
Blessings to you…anew!