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Confucius once stated, “Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.” I remember catching glimpses of beauty and goodness as a child, yet I knew those gifts could not be for me; they were fleeting like a vanishing sunset. 

I recall grieving over moments where life (God) touched me, but I knew they were passing. I would grieve before the moment was gone. It was engraved on my heart that beauty and goodness were for others, not a reality I could hold onto or trust. 

How could my young heart trust when life was relentlessly unraveling at the seams? As a young girl, I felt the world in a big way, the highs and the lows. As I grew older with life’s twists, turns and hardships, gloom settled on my heart, crowding out goodness.

Undeniably, everyone hinted at a better lot in life than me. Melancholy and pessimism were close friends. Was gloom my destiny? Or was I just stuck in a vicious cycle? Certainly, a cycle Satan delighted in me believing was my destiny. 

Unknowingly, I set out to sabotage the beauty and goodness life offered me. 

Webster’s Dictionary names the destructive behavior for what it is, “an act or process tending to hamper or hurt.” I wasn’t out to hurt anyone else, just myself. 

This sabotage reinforced my belief that everyone had it better, or that beauty and goodness weren’t meant for me. 

Eventually, I questioned this deception. It wasn’t until I became desperate to see with different eyes that God opened my heart and mind to daily keep track of what He was doing in my life. 

That was when I embarked on a journey that revealed God’s hand in every moment of beauty and goodness I had encountered. Gratitude shockingly exposed how much more he had in store for me.

I started a gratitude journal twenty years ago, mostly in order to wake up. I needed to appreciate all the little moments in my day, the gifts that were right before me, to what Jesus was doing in my life, every single day, every single hour, and every single moment. 

I clamored to counter the sabotage voices in my head with the truth. 

Whether I gave thanks for something large or tiny did not matter — I wrote it all. 

 As I journeyed along the path of gratitude, I realized gratitude isn’t meant for just the good times. 

I was challenged to scan, spot, and scrutinize beauty and goodness even when life was hard.

Gratitude teaches us  joy even in tough and broken situations, which reveals lies we so readily cling to. 

In GOOD days and HARD days we must continue living into the mystery of gratitude to capture the beauty and goodness that he has in store for us or else we’ll never begin this practice. 

The glimmers of beauty and goodness I recognized as a child are now mine to claim. I no longer fear the loss. I linger with pen and paper waiting, expecting, anticipating what God will do next.

Friends, in the hustle and bustle of this busy season, I encourage you to snag a beautiful journal, old notebook, or even scrap paper and jot down one thing to be grateful for. 

1 Comment

Unknown member
Feb 02

Congratulations on your new website. It is beautiful!

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