Complain No More

The life of gratitude is not easily lived. Filled with complaints of what didn’t happen and what we don’t have, our lives can easily get lost in a what-if world, one that didn’t happen and may never occur. For too long, as a recovering strong black woman, the what-if world is where I lived and no modern-day destroyer kept me from complaining. I just wanted what I wanted and in pursuit of it would moan about not yet having it.

What about the here and now? What about what we already have? Are we thankful for that, satisfied for now with that? I’m working being consistently thankful and satisfied. I have left the what-if world, only visiting and doing so less and less. I’m on the gratitude road, traveling to the place where my lips always sing God’s praises no matter what the circumstances. This is a place I am enjoying getting to and very much different from the anxiety-ridden road of complaint.

Two and a half months ago I took Ann Voskamp’s challenge to begin a gratitude journal, daily writing down up to 1,000 as they occur the gifts God places before me: the smell of flowers, my children’s laughter, a hard day that came to an end, anything that reminds me that God is ever-present, ever-powerful, ever-giving; He is faithful and I can be grateful just because of that. Today begins my official declaration of joining Ann on her challenge and journey. Monday now on my blog until whenever God changes the direction will be Multitudes on Mondays, the day I share items from my gratitude journal. As I share I hope you are prompted to thank God for your blessings, to do so right where you are, and maybe even begin a journal of your own. Join me in living a joyous life, one that only comes from giving thanks.

a good night’s rest
food for Joshua’s lunch
warm clothes to dress Joshua for school
snuggling with Nate
reading two books with Nate
praying for an old friend
quiet in the morning house
a take-care of business husband
fresh fruit in the winter
warm pajamas

Copyright 2011 by Rhonda J. Smith