Last Sunday on Easter morning, while it was still dark outside, I finished A GRAND THANKS, my list of 1000 things for which I am grateful. Twenty-six pages were carefully folded and placed in a beautifully decorated envelope and added to the offering plate during worship. My Lenten project had given me forty days to focus on God’s blessings, things large and small, obvious and not so obvious, heavenly and earthly, divine and common place. I saw God’s counsel, His surprise and delight, His answer to prayer, and His love and support, wisdom and encouragement. I had days when I couldn’t stop writing and yes, I had days when I was whining and couldn’t get pen to paper.

Throughout my list were thanks for time. I was grateful for time with my husband and my sons, time for Bible study and workouts, time to write and reflect. I even thanked God for times of challenge and frustration, difficulty and anxiousness. I’ve learned that without a dose of reality time and again, I can feel pretty self-reliant, turning my back on God’s wisdom and counsel at the very time I need it most.

We try to save time. We try to make time. We’re admonished not to waste time, not to kill time. We wish for more time. We want a better time. Some of us have lots of time; others have less. I want to thank God for deciding I was worth the time. I have been blessed beyond measure, beyond my ability to appreciate and understand. My God is an amazing God!

And to Ann Voskamp, my sincerest thanks. Your book, One Thousand Gifts, inspired me to delight in each day, to celebrate the uniqueness of this life, and to cherish my little place in God’s most beautiful creation.