You know how sometimes life feels like it’s passing you by at a million miles an hour?? Sometimes I feel like I race through life…wishing away the bad times and not enjoying the good times enough, instead of appreciating each moment and finding joy in the little things. Too often I forget my purpose and seek fulfillment in the next good thing that’s going to happen or live in fear of the next bad thing that could happen. It’s exhausting! I did this a lot of times in the months leading up to my wedding…I wished away the time during the countdown to my wedding because I was so ready to just be MARRIED to my best friend…which is not a bad thing! But it is bad to expect the big things you may be moving towards like marriage or a good job to make you feel satisfied…because if you place that much value in things that aren’t certain, you’ll either finally reach the wedding day or get the promotion and realize that it really can’t bring you the lasting fulfillment you thought it would, or you’ll never get there and always feel like your missing out. I feel most full when I’m appreciating every little gift…gifts that I really believe come from a God who knows me better than I know myself…even if I’m just giving thanks for another cup of coffee or the way the light shines through the front window of our house and illuminates my little office. Giving thanks for the seemingly unimportant things gives me peace and contentment in spite of the things I wish I could change.
And that’s what I’m learning from this awesome book that my sweet mother-in-law gave me for Christmas last year called One Thousand Gifts! I’ve read it twice already, but I’m still learning new things from it…about how to savor joy – about how to celebrate and love life even when there’s not anything to celebrate – and about how to live more fully. The author, Ann Voskamp, dares her readers to “live an emptier fuller life” in the first chapter. Slowing down..living each moment fully…giving thanks for every little thing, instead of just rushing through the day, leads to a life more full of joy and peace. Slowing down is HARD in a world where society and culture sets such high expectations for what you should accomplish in your life to be “happy” and “successful”…but I’m learning it’s worth it! It’s worth it because true and lasting joy won’t come from your achievements – getting a high paying job, buying a house, earning awards, having lots of blog followers, having a clean and perfectly decorated home, etc. So if you haven’t done so recently, take some time to slow down and rest and give thanks…even if you’re giving thanks for something hard..or for something simple…like a cup of coffee (I’m personally extremely thankful for coffee;)) or a sweet text message from a friend, or a comfy bed to sleep in at night. I’m slowly learning that gratitude is the secret to contentment. Gratitude for the good things, bad things, simple things, amazing things, easy things, and hard things…
And if you havnt read this book before and enjoy more poetical writing, I highly recommend it…Whether you believe that there’s a God or not, the message to slow down and live more fully by giving thanks in all circumstances and appreciating little moments is a good one:)..And if you HAVE read the book and liked it but don’t follow the author’s blog, you should here!
Happy Thursday! YAY it’s almost the weekend!!