We are in a season of gratitude. Everywhere we look are articles, ideas, and crafts about being thankful. We pin it. Share it. Post it. Like it. We know a thankful heart brings joy to the soul but…
But…sometimes it’s just not that easy. For many of us, life doesn’t look how we think it should. Our loved ones get sick, seriously sick. Spouses have affairs. Finances suffocate us. Businesses crumble. Children rebel. We’re single in a world of marrieds. We feel lonely. Depressed. Down.
The holidays can feel like a celebration of how much fuller everybody else’s life appears. If we have it, the indulgence of food, family, and activity can cover up that pit of emptiness, but the lack of those things can accentuate just what we think we’re missing.
Be thankful? Really? Have you seen my life lately?
I’ve had some of those Thanksgivings where we go around the table sharing what we are thankful for. As such blessings as job promotions and accomplishments were spoken, I wept sharing mine. “I’m thankful for financial scholarships. I’m thankful my marriage is surviving unemployment. I’m thankful this year is almost over and a new one is beginning.”
We often have to be strong to endure what’s on our plate, and we persevere when we really just want to crumble. It’s scary to soften our hearts for a moment, to see past the pain of struggle, and to be thankful…but that is where the good stuff lies.
Sometimes being stripped down allows us to understand gratitude with a new depth and purity. In every lousy situation we have a choice, an opportunity to be thankful. An opportunity to choose joy.
So if life doesn’t look how you think it should…if it’s harder than you thought…lonelier than you thought…if it’s exhausting, look again.
Look with fresh eyes.
Look without comparison.
Look for a sprinkling of beauty on a tough situation.
Look for a joy that doesn’t match your circumstance.
Look for the unexpected blessings.
God adores you, even when His voice is quiet.
Today, let’s be sensitive that our plates aren’t always equal. Let’s look beyond ourselves and encourage one another. Add a chair to your table, even if it messes up the dynamics.
Let’s make our lives a place of refreshment to others. Let’s cling to the blessings of today and be joyful. ♥ Allison
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What a timely post. This has been quite a year……I am glad to have a reminder that there is ALWAYS something to be grateful for. Thank you so much!
I have had a few of those years to. Hang in there my friend, they aren’t easy. Praying you have a joy-filled holiday season.
Appreciate the depth of your heart and expression. I can feel the warmth of your writing and God has gifted you with insights that touches many lives through your honesty and vulnerability. Thank you for taking time to share your life with us and if you lived in Minnesota I would sit with you for cup of coffee and just chat. :). Blessings on your family! Yumi
Thank you so much Yumi for your kindness towards me. I would love nothing more than to sit and have a cup of coffee with you! I may need to borrow a jacket or thick blanket though because my Florida blood doesn’t know true cold. Have a blessed Thanksgiving. Allison
thank you for sharing such a powerful post. I’m pinning to the Sunday Parenting Party pinterest board.
What a wonderful post!! I really needed it tonight. Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday!
Very, very good. Our plates aren’t always equal, and that’s okay. They don’t have to be. We each have choices to make about how we feel about it. I love this, thank you.
Thanks Andrea. It’s a liberating thing to realize our plates aren’t equal and that’s ok. Makes you stop comparing and more importantly sensitive to those around you. Have a great December.
Oh what a wonderful post and so fitting! it truly has been a tough year and I cannot wait to find out what the new one has in stock for us! Thank you.
Wishing great things for you Chrissy this coming year.
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I have mentioned you and your lovely blog in my new blog called Squeezing Joy. I would love if you would take a gander.
You can find the link under my profile, and the post is called; “Day 8: The trouble with brains … ” Thank you for some amazing and joyful inspiration. I would have a button for you to say “I was featured on Squeezing Joy”, but I am a little new for that. 😀
It is Ok to be in psi. Don’t believe all the self-help nonsense out here. I’m reading “Dak Night if,the Soul,” and this is the imethat grows us as people. Denial isn’t good. Living the pain is transformative. Peace.
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I love this, Allison! You have such a wonderful ability to step back and look at the truth of a situation. So thankful for you and your writing!
Sweet Kari, Thank you. That means the world coming from you. I am so excited to scream to the world how fabulous your book is! Can’t wait til it comes out. xoxo
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Made me cry… Needed to read this tonight and God led me to it. Thank you.
I’m so glad Kristi.
I needed this today. Thank you, friend.