I find myself each week looking forward to Friday mornings when I can post my seven gratitudes to a link up community of ladies who are sharing their thankfulness each Friday with each other and the world. My inspiring friend Leanna created this space for us, and you can read inspiring stories of thanks and gratitude here:
This week, I am thankful for rest in its many forms; for sabbath in the many ways it comes to me, sometimes disguised as encouraging words, a long drive, a cup of tea.
1. For a sunny drive out of town, away from business, into the sanctuary of a different bed and a cozy, welcoming home: Lord, hear my many thanks.
On Wednesday afternoon, Andrew and I left Atlanta behind for a few days to come to Tennessee to spend some time with his parents; and then his sister. I’ve enjoyed the time to sleep in, the kindness of hospitality in clean towels, Chinese food, and AMAZING coffee; and reading Amy Tan in the late morning, whilst sipping Earl Grey. Pot roast, Fro Yo, theologically stimulating conversation, and Audible audiobooks have been our vacation companions this week. Bliss.
2. For storytellers like Kaitlin Curtice Brian McLaren and Amy Tan: Lord, hear my many thanks.
I realize Kaitlin made my last post as well, but she writes amazing stories, and is an indigenous woman you need to get to know!
Brian McLaren has reviewed her book with high, high praise. For all its redundancy, high praise from Brian McLaren is indeed highest praise! Way to go, K! We’re all cheering for you.
Amy Tan has been my favorite author since Sociology 101 when we had to read The Joy Luck Club. The way she spins a story is unmatched, and her ability to draw a reader in with vivid word pictures and the rich heritage of her Chinese ancestry is an indulgent treat, perfect for any vacation.
3. For The Cooperative Baptist Fellowship (CBF), ChurchWorks, and my new friend, Craig: Lord, hear my many thanks.
I made a new friend this week. Craig Janney works with CBF in Reference and Referral; helping ministers to find jobs… but also, helping them prolong their tenure in church leadership positions. We had a good meeting this week and this is what I’m taking away from that:
– for every good day in ministry, you get 2 residual good days; for every bad, you get 4. So it’s wise to stack as many good days each week as you can, so that on a bad day, you have a good day reserve to fall back on.
– you create good days by ending on a high note, which for me, is either visiting our church people, or coffee shop sermon writing for Church at Home.
– find a restorative niche: a hobby or a practice that keeps you grounded. For me, writing/journaling/blogging, baking, card making, and sunny daytime walks at a park.
4. For my new earth-friendly, lovelily scented laundry soap; with the smell of clean cotton that permeates my clothes and hearkens simpler times, beckoning me to slow down and just be: Lord, hear my many thanks.
5. For day trips to North GA with my friend Sarah, text-versations with my bestie; for sushi and prayer time with my roomie: Lord, hear my many thanks.
Sarah and I went to Dahlonega last week and had a blast. We ate at a fun cafe, and walked around town for a bit. That’s where I got my new laundry soap.
6. For time off, mentor-like supervisory staff, understanding, and permission for self-care (which I don’t need, as it turns out): Lord, hear my many thanks.
I am pretty excellent, if I do say so myself, at taking care of others. And pretty horrendous at taking care of myself. I was reminded this week that when I don’t take time to renew myself, I am saying “no” to a call to ministry. I am called to service, NOT messiahship. Harsh, good words and an important reminder.
7. For Brown Sugar and Maple Infused Balsamic Vinegar Candied Bacon: Lord, hear my many thanks.
Thanks be to God for all good things. 🙂