While flipping through an old notebook I discovered several gratitude lists I made during our Daring Adventure transition at the request of my counselor. Her assignment was this: Write down five things you are grateful/thankful for, five things you are thankful for that haven’t happened yet, and five things you are giving to God. I had to write down the five things that hadn’t happened yet as though they had already happened.
My lists felt pretty silly to me. These were not the kinds of things that displayed some kind of deep spirituality in me. Nope. These lists were written from a place of survival.
This one is from February 13th, 2018
I’m thankful for…
- Another ride in the car with all four of us.
- Ice cream.
- My husband.
- A place to live while we’re looking.
Things I’m thankful for as though they have already happened…
- I’m thankful we found the right home.
- I’m thankful I don’t feel overwhelmed.
- I’m thankful Mackenzie is thriving in Scotland.
- I’m thankful Markus has a job.
- I’m thankful we found a church.
Things I’m giving to God…
- House hunting and the disappointment I feel.
- My aching heart.
- Anxiety for the future.
Today as I read this list I wiped tears away and whispered THANK YOU because nearly every single one of those things that hadn’t happened yet have become reality. Now I have pages of answered not yets to look back over and remember how faithful our Heavenly Father has been to us.
When I made these lists I didn’t feel very grateful. I felt forgotten. I had to keep writing down some of the same things to give to God multiple times. Life is hard and so is exercising our faith when our circumstances feel hopeless.
My wise counselor didn’t tell me to do all of this because it would make me feel better immediately. She knew better. She had me to it because she knew it would shift my focus to something other than what was right in front of me. Now I hold in my hands the treasure of seeing how my faithful Heavenly Father never forgot me.
Perhaps you’re in a tough place today and need to do some gratitude push-ups like I did. It might feel like a silly waste of time if you’re new at this. That’s ok. Start where you are, I promise you won’t stay there. Those faith muscles will get stronger whether you can feel them or not. Your Heavenly Father loves you so much. And for today that is more than enough.
Let me know in the comments if you do Gratitude Push-ups or if you plan on giving this a try. Thanks for stopping by.