Friday, September 12, 2008

Count Your Blessings: Part One

Life is full of blessings. Some blessings are in the form of people, some are things, some are experiences. Unfortunately, we often take these blessings for granted. We can so easily forget how blessed we are; our blessings, right in front of us, escape our view. This happens to me sometimes too. So to remind myself, and to share them with you (whoever you are!), I thought I'd list some of them here. Therefore, without any further adieu, let me begin to count my blessings.

This, folks, is my wife, Alisha. Here she is doing something she loves doing: reading. And here she is doing it at a place she loves: her parents' camp. Now, I can't even begin to imagine how big a blessing she has been to me. Whether through her intelligence, her sense of humour, her sense of adventure, or her faith she has made me more me. I think one of the most important things our husbands and wives do for us is to draw us more out of ourselves, help us to become more of who are meant by God to be. Alisha has definitely done this for me. She has been a source of strength and encouragement more times than I can count. And she has also challenged my comfort zones on plenty of occasions, bringing me on all kinds of adventures that I would have hardly embarked upon on my own. Of course, sometimes that means getting lost in the woods!

Aha. My little girl, Ella. My, my, it's hard to believe she'll turn four this October. She's smart, funny, creative, imaginative, has a great laugh, loves to tease, enjoys dancing, listens to all kinds of music from worship music to classical to U2 and Jars of Clay, and loves singing and will do so even when out in the yard by herself. While being a parent is not always easy, I can't imagine having it any easier than we do with Ella. She brings joy into our lives, and surprises us constantly with her ability to express herself. Her personality is a curious one. She absorbs knowledge and information at a breackneck pace. She is also sensitive and feels things deeply. And she's a lot of fun to be around! She reminds me of the importance of play.

This is Sharon. She's my mother-in-law. And she's been a huge blessing too. While I tease her mercilessly sometimes, it's not because any of those really mean mother-in-law jokes apply to her. We actually get along incredibly well. We talk a lot. We talk about books, music, and, quite often, have long, deep conversations about life, ministry, and faith. We share similar interests so much so that she sometimes says I'm more like her than either of her kids! In addition to all this, she's been and continues to be a tremendous support to me in my ministry in countless ways. Plus, she and my father-in-law live relatively close and so can babysit quite frequently!

Speaking of my father-in-law, this is him. This is Harold. He's the strong, silent, sometimes grumpy type. He's a man of the woods, of working and playing outdoors. He's a man of integrity, someone trustworthy, someone reliable. He's also a tease. I think that's where Ella gets it! He knows a lot more about cars than I do, so he helps us out when our car needs looking at. In a lot of ways, he's become the father I never had.

These are just some of the blessings in my life and, surprise, surprise, they're people! Isn't that the way? There are other important people, too, and I will get to them. But it's getting late now and I need to get to bed. So this has become part one of this post because I need the blessing of a comfortable bed and a good night's sleep.

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