The Lord has been highlighting his goodness... underlining and emboldening it.
Everyone goes through hard seasons and seasons of fullness. In those hard times it can be so hard to see the goodness of The Lord hidden among all the thorns and rocks. It is present, but we can't feel it. In those full seasons of relative ease, it is so common to forget that the goodness around us exists and is from The Lord. It is present, but we take it for-granted and don't value it.
I have been reading Ann Voskamp's book One Thousand Gifts. (I know. I was pretty late to jump on that band wagon.) If you haven't read the book Ann talks about being given the challenge to list one thousand things she is thankful for. Through the process of this challenge she discovered how thankfulness can infuse our lives with fresh breath and vibrence. She stumbled on the fact that we are made to be close to God and as we acknowledge his presence through gratefulness for the goodness that he has already placed in our lives the simple goodness refracted and magnified to glorious abundance. It is our duty (not obligation) and our joy to live in thankfulness.
Here is a quote that really struck me:
"I only deepen the wound of the world when I neglect to give thanks for the early light dappled through leaves and the heavy perfume of wild roses in early July and the song of crickets on humid nights and the rivers that run and stars that rise and the rain that falls and all the good things that a good God gives."
Ann Voskamp, One Thousand Gifts
I want to see the wounds of the world and the wounds in my heart be healed. Thankfulness is a key to that. I have seen and felt healing in my own heart as I have begun to follow Ann down this path of gratefulness. Thankfulness is like the rock that God told Moses to strike in the dessert. Though it might not seem logical in our human understanding, thanksgiving is where the living waters of joy and healing come flowing from.
It has been my irrational fear that somehow I will reach the end of God, or at least use up my allotted portion of him. I fear that I will run out of things to discover about him, that I will reach the end of his love, the end of his patience, the end of his grace. I have caught myself worrying about if I will be able to find a thousand things to thank him for.
In the same journal that acts as my log of gratitude, the other day I penned this question the Holy Spirit whispered in my ear "Where does my goodness end? When will it run dry? Where am I not? Which place lacks my presence, my sacredness?" I was blown to pieces and held tightly to Jesus' chest. I cannot escape God and his goodness even if I tried.
If you are running from God, you cannot out run him. If you are needing his grace, you cannot use it up. If you are surviving only because of his love, it is everlasting and unending. He is good. If we see it, he is good. If we can only see tragedy, he is good. If we can't see anything, he is good. He is good, and that is never going to change.
Join me in a pattern of thanksgiving and discover the vast beauty he weaves into our lives. Glory in his goodness. Revel in him revealed. Whack that boulder in the dessert and watch as his living waters flow freely.