a heart of Thanks.

Woot! Bonus blog…are you really surprised? Today’s blog should be different, special, and more light-hearted. Last year I wrote, “give Thanks” as a little way to say what I’m thankful for. Some people are tweeting or facebook-status-updating something they are thankful for each day of November. All are great (I’m still doing the “#gratefultweet” on Twitter, I’m up over 100 days already!), and they all challenge us to have a grateful heart. There are may things we could complain about, many things we could even be angry about, but let’s take a moment today, tomorrow, and the rest of this week to really remember what we are thankful for.

In my somewhat usual fashion, I’ll list a few things I’m grateful/thankful for, then leave you with some of my favorite quotes to inspire you as we begin the holiday season. May your Thanksgivings be blessed.

Blogging. Maybe that sounds a little crazy, but I really am grateful for blogging. I know I say this a lot, but it started out as this crazy thing that has turned into one of the greatest blessings in my life. Every time I log in I’m reminded what a blessing it is just to write out my thoughts, and to write for Him. I’m even more blessed that people tune in to read what I write, and I’m blessed to see how the blog continues to grow.
…not to mention the wonderful community, sisterhood, and fellowship I feel in the Catholic blogosphere. It is beautiful and humbling.

Singlehood. I can honestly say that there was a time, not all that long ago, when I never thought I would say that I’m grateful to be single. I used to view being single as some kind of a curse, or proof that God was super annoyingly jealous, but yet here I am, grateful. I’m grateful that God calls me into relationship with Him, that He loves on me more than anyone else ever could, and that in these seasons of singleness He calms my heart. And I’m even more grateful that, perhaps for the first time ever, I’m at peace with being single, and in no rush to rejoin the dating scene. All in His good time. {And, for the record, His time IS good.}

Sisterhood. It is crazy rare, which calls me to appreciate it all the more. There is a HUGE difference between friendship and sisterhood, even among women. I have female friends who aren’t necessarily sisters, and then I have female friends with whom I can share deep sisterhood, deep conversations, and a deep love of the Lord. When good sisters come along, I’m incredibly grateful that God blesses me with such wonderful women in my life {not that I’m not grateful for all the women in my life, but there is something really special about sisterhood!}.

Prayer. However, I’m thankful in a different way for prayer than I was last year. I’m thankful that God calls me to prayer, and I’m grateful for the chance to pray for people, and pray for them in a very intentional way. Sometimes prayer is hard and God calls me to pray for people who I don’t necessarily want to pray for because I feel that they’ve hurt me in some way. God uses that time of prayer for others to soften my heart, and to show me how to love like He does – and that is a gift that keeps on giving.

“Faith is our response to God’s gift of unconditional love.” – Father Chris Kirchgesnner, O.S.B.

“Love is most nearly itself when here and now cease to matter.” – T.S. Eliot

“Fear is not a sufficient reason to not be obedient to your calling.” – Abbot Placid Solari, O.S.B.

“Pain throws your heart to the ground, love turns the whole thing around, and though it won’t all go the way it should, I know the heart of life is good.” – John Mayer, “Heart of Life”

What are YOU thankful for? I’d love to hear about it in the comments!

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