A box of gratitude…

Written by: Ms. O

One of my all time favorite passages is very short…but it packs a wallop of emotion for me. Maybe because it is a sum total of how I feel when I think of the people that I have known over my lifetime…the faces…the memories that are stored in their smiles…and how much I believe that we glean from those we come in contact with.

Over time, there are so many ways I have been blessed in doing what I do. I have been given gifts…very thoughtful ways of thanking me for what I do.  I have people that I know if I ever found myself in a jam…(that’s the strangest idiom ever…just what does that mean?)…would come to my rescue. I have been friended/followed/pinned on Facebook….Instagram….Pinterest. Sent many text messages…(hello, let’s remember though that I am in bed early…as in embarrassingly early…so please keep those at a decent hour)….with words of encouragement and love.  I am forever humbled when I am asked to pray for someone…some thing… an event….an occasion.

One of the biggest blessings I have been given is when I am invited to a wedding. What joy it brings to sit in that “sacred place” and witness two people making their solemn vows. It humbles me…truly it does. One of my “former youth” was recently engaged. She and her mother were talking to me about picking out the invitations to her wedding, when the daughter commented that she did not see the big deal in an invitation…because, “the only thing people do with them is throw them away.”

I truly beg to differ…

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Over the years I have been invited to many weddings…and I earnestly try to save either the invitation, or the order of the ceremony…. and please understand why. Paul captures my reasoning as he writes in his letter to the church in Philippi :

I thank my God every time I remember you….(Phil. 1:3)

Do you hear that? Doesn’t it make total sense? I read the names as I go through the stack…faces appear before my eyes…I smile…and truly thank God…as I remember. God is so truly good…duh…and dead on in the fact that He created us for community.

When these joyous days come, we are called to gather together…to draw to one another and celebrate the wonders of His love and faithfulness. I know I do. As I watch the bride or groom…depending on which one I know…or both on some pretty amazing days…I pray for them. I first and foremost thank God that I have been a part of this day…and their lives…and then I ask Him to bless them …as they join hands and hearts as one….in Him. Throw this away? No way my sweet youth…I treasure them up as the gems they are to me…a record of who has passed through my life…and the impact you have had on me. We have enough tough times…way too much heartache and sadness….we need to hang on to the glorious days when love shines big….so that I never stop thanking God…for you…and you…and you.

Ms. O