One Thousand Gifts — a beginning

c. 1632

Image via Wikipedia

Ann Voskamp wrote a book called One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are, in which she challenges people to give thanks for one thousand gifts. So, here is my start; I may be a little slower at this than most.

1. Savior, Jesus Christ

2. wife of 40+ years

3. Two sons

4. Five grand kids

5. watching the stars on a clear night

6. The sound of a car that starts when it should

7. Time to be quiet

8. My mother

9. My mother-in-law

10. My two brothers.

 

I should add that it is fitting to do this according to the Biblical encouragement (1 Thessalonians 5:18; Psalm 118:1, etc.).

Advertisements

About exegete77

disciple of Jesus Christ, husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, teacher, and theologian
This entry was posted in Personal Reflection. Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to One Thousand Gifts — a beginning

  1. jennihusker says:

    I like this very much, Rich.

    Like

  2. Emily Cook says:

    I have a gratitude journal as well, and have enjoyed sharing this practice with my oldest daughter. An uplifting and biblical idea, indeed.

    I found that book to be an interesting read. There are some great treasures in it, but also quite a few things that I find unorthodox.

    I also found this review very interesting:
    http://www.bygracealone.net/2011/05/romantic-panentheism.html

    Would love to discuss it more and hear your thoughts on the review!

    Blessings in Christ!
    Emily

    Like

  3. exegete77 says:

    Howdy, Emily. Good that you share the gratitude journal with your daughter. I think this is a very positive approach that needs to be encouraged and supported in families.

    I have only read snippets of the book. My reference to it was because I used her encouragement to get started on my own digital gratitude journal. I have read her blog over the past 4-6 weeks and watched a couple of her (YouTube) videos.

    I guess for evaluation, I realize that she and I come from different theological perspectives. Do I endorse everything she writes? No, but I try to approach this based on where she is. From her site she acknowledges:

    I believe in the The Nicene Creed and the Apostles’ Creed and our fellowship’s statement of faith. We’re just simple, farming folk, worshipping in a Brethren Bible Chapel, and are non-denominational, evangelical (believing in the necessity of salvation in Christ), Bible believing (embracing the Bible as God’s infallible and complete message to all people) and grace-clinging.

    I find her statement an interesting mix of historic creedal confession and of Brethren/evangelical theology. As a Lutheran, on the one hand, I can rejoice with her acceptance of the historic creeds, on the other hand I disagree with her on aspects of Brethren/evangelical theology.

    With that being said, I think we have to remember someone’s background when we read what the person writes. In other words, do I have to provide a comprehensive statement of every doctrinal point whenever I write to make sure it is covered? No. Should I exercise caution in what I write? Absolutely (and that stems partly from my Lutheran theological training). When someone reads my blog, that person should understand that I write from a confessional Lutheran perspective, even if I don’t mention it in every post.

    So also with Ann. From my reading of her blog, I would not see her writing as promoting panentheism. I would acknowledge her poetic style, but also remember her Brethren/evangelical heritage. As for her writing on nature, to me that is reflective of Psalm 104, etc. and her life on the farm. Much of what she writes on her blog resonates with me, having grown up on a farm in northern Minnesota.

    In summary, if you notice, my link on the button is to her blog, not to a site selling her book, perhaps a minor point, but it reflects how I view all this.

    Like

  4. Emily Cook says:

    Thank you for the reply 🙂

    Much of what she said in her book resonates with me as well, especially as a writer and mother of six! I definitely appreciate her reminder that ALL good gifts come from above- all of the little blessings in our lives really ARE gracious gifts from our Father who loves us!

    My daughter made it to #200 (the goal I gave her in return for a sleepover); and I have stalled out somewhere in the mid-300s. I think you have inspired me to pick up the pen once again. Counting blessings truly does force me to slow down and live in the present. Why do I seem to have such a hard time with that? 🙂

    I think this idea fits nicely with a Lutheran understanding of vocation as well. When my daughter was suffering from a brain tumor and my faith was shaking, I certainly did find encouragement through the small blessings and thoughtfulness of people. “This is a good casserole-maybe God really does care for me.” Those life-giving droplets of grace turned my eyes away from my trial and sustained my faith, and they were certainly gifts from God. (This is what I had in mind as I wrote my own recent blog post.)

    As I read her book, I also was reminded of how wonderful it is to have God’s promise to always be there for me, clearly, lovingly, in the gospel for ME, in the Lord’s Supper. When experiences and circumstances become nothing but dark, there the light of His grace for me will always, always shine.

    Like

  5. exegete77 says:

    Why do I seem to have such a hard time with that?
    As do I? Maybe something to do with the fact that we are both part of a larger family, the sinful human family. 😀

    Thanks for insight into your experiences, especially with the circumstances with your daughter. As I look back on the darker days, I think we get to the point where God gets our attention through the smaller things and gifts He has given us. At times even the ability to get out of bed was a gift. Ultimately when friends and/or family fail, it is only God who is there. His Word and His Supper are constants.

    Like

Comments are closed.