~one thousand gifts~

I know. *gasp* I’m writing again. Carlos Fuentes, one of my inspirations in the Latin American prose & fiction, told me one day that he believes in no such thing as inspiration when he writes, instead he believes in discipline. We must write daily, whether we want to or not. Practice makes perfect.

So, I was challenged, but the rebel in me sometimes doesn’t obey just to prove the opposite. That I can still write well, even when I don’t write often (or at all!) as it has been this past year! GAH!

Which brings me to my reason for writing today. Same thing happens with my journaling. I used to write so often, but then I had a baby…ha! (Insert first year of baby’s life here. No more explanation needed) A few months ago, though, I started reading a life-changing book, One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp. Challenging, thoughtful, riveting to the soul. One way that it moved a crazy small group of us who meet at the un-godly hour of 7am on Saturday mornings, was by starting a thankfulness journal, or gratitude journal. Ann talks about the Road to Emmaus and how Jesus was best recognized by the sad disciples at the end of the road, during the breaking of bread and giving thanks. It was in the moment of giving thanks that the resurrected and glorious Christ was seen to the naked eye.

So our author, Ann, was challenged by a friend, to start a gratitude journal. Giving thanks in order to “see” God perhaps, in her day? so our little group of women, we started one, too. I loved the formula because it didn’t force me to write the long paragraphs that I’m resisting to write *lately*. It was like a grocery or to-do list.
I liked the simplicity. Looking for God’s touch. God’s provision. God’s light. God’s presence. God’s voice. God’s warmth. God’s gifts. In the every day. In the mundane. In those little things that, if you aren’t looking, you don’t see Him walking by you.
Some seemed silly. Some deep & huge. All Him. And I found that in my “thanksgiving”, I was starting to see Him, walking on the road to Emmaus. And so I’ve been searching for Jesus since December. I haven’t lost Him, mind you, no worries. But, I’ve been looking closer, deeper, more intimately. Looking for not the same old-same old. And I’ve found Him. In this journal that I hope to reach 1000 gifts. Or perhaps I’ll go beyond that and my children will read it as my gospel of how I saw Jesus face-to-face.

So now it’s evening, and I’m following Dr. Fuentes’ advice of writing with discipline. My son’s asleep. My husband’s tweeting. It’s time to write. Short words. Short phrases. Words of Thanksgiving that feed my trust in Him. Open my eyes wide to see Him. Wanna see the silliness? I flipped back in my journal to see what happened “on the road” since I started writing…

#2. dirty, cakey, sticky sippy cups by kitchen sink, because it means my baby had milk to drink.

#10. God’s angels protecting me during car crash in snow

#13. Dove chocolate

#60. hubby doing 3 loads of laundry

#62. warm folded towels

#78. road trip with kim roth

#80. daffodils at the monastery

#103. my son kissing me on cheek as i rocked him to sleep in the dark

#111. money to buy groceries

#145. nash’s hair standing up when he wakes

#186. nash and abe strolling down the road in a gardening cart

#192. killing the tick crawling up my leg

#205. mediterranean bday dinner with my hubby

#222. hubby getting job after 3 years in the waiting room with God

#235. seeing a pregnant friend getting 3 free kids meals at Chic-fill-a

Silly Jesus. Showing Himself to me in the every day. Silly how much He loves me (and you). Will you look for Him on the road? Believe me. He’s there. My eyes have seen His glory.

grateful,
~Ines

2 thoughts on “~one thousand gifts~

  1. My times with you would definately go on my grateful list, as well. Did you realize your last post was almost a year to the date since the one before it? I am so blessed by your words & grateful that you are writing again!

  2. @Kim- thanks for your encouragement! you secretly and unknowingly helped me to start writing again. Cuz you got TWO blogs you know…haha…

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