Downtown Abbey PhotosThe door squeaks, and I know it's her.
And the door squeaks...and she's gone.
She's completed her legal paperwork to become the bride of a young American.
She had one more border crossing, in hopes of having the custom officials accept and recognize her K-1 Visa.
I remember pacing and praying during my gym class, listening for the tiny notification alert on my IPhone. Her final text to me read... "Made it!! Phew, no issues!! Here we go!!"
I was overwhelmed with tears and peace in my heart. It was at this point that I realized how many times I let myself become anxious over the detailed paper work, border crossings and the wedding plans.
But as I continued reading through Ann Voskamp's writings, I was inspired as I realized that I could embrace a lifestyle of radical gratitude rather than thinking about the daily deadlines, budgets and daily tasks that had often taken priority.
This past week I have taken the verse from Psalm 37:4 and started to intentionally write down the moments that I claimed to be "the desires of your heart" Before long I had a list of experiences that that were teaching me about gratitude. It's about learning to be content in everyday experiences and sharing the happiness with others. True contentment is not about finding impressive careers or exciting travels. It's about seeing your grandson's face light up, after he has asked if he could wear a suit jacket, rather than shirt and pants to the wedding and finding the right jacket at a bargain price. It's about sitting outside with my spouse, discussing wedding plans and feeling the sun's ray on our faces as we think about God's design for marriage. It's about phoning a friend who's all excited about sharing her granddaughter's wedding plans. It's about helping your daughter prepare for the stagette, feeling her excitement and being thankful that you are included in 'some' of the plans. It's about asking God to direct you through those last minute details and feeling the satisfaction as you hunt down some more bargain prices.
It's about focusing on the day to day things and realizing that I 'get to do life' with so many family and friends. Let's wake up and discover God's everyday blessings, rather than letting stress and anxiety control our lives.
Why not start thinking about some of your moments and let God's joy transform your life.
"Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart". Psalm. 37:4
Julie shared a beautiful devotional for us last week called, My Beloved. We are entering the season for weddings and there will be many brides/grooms and families working through their plans. Let's encourage these young brides, and share examples of gratitude rather than negativity. We want to pray that we can model and help our newlyweds understand the new meaning about committing themselves to God and receiving "the desires of your heart."
It won't take long now and I'll hear the door squeak again, hearing the laughter and joy in their voices together, knowing that the border crossings have little meaning anymore.