Thursday, January 1, 2015

Gifts, Grey Days, and Grace

This week's gifts...
1171. Spending Tobin's first Christmas quietly at home, just-us-four
1172. Adam coming and taking him when he decided to be awake in the middle of the night, so that I could get some sleep
1173. and then all of us sleeping in together
1174. Tobin gaining weight - he's back up to birthweight, and we don't have to go back to the pediatrician for two months!
1175. A delightful visit from my brother-and-sister in law - unequivocally enjoyable
1176. My She Reads Truth study pack for the book of John coming in the mail - and being carefully poked into the postbox, instead of a pick-up slip and me having to go get it
1177. Adam and Brooklyn braving the cold rain to pick up some needed groceries
1178. Longer spans of "quiet alertness" for Tobin - bright eyes, taking it all in
1179. Having yarn left over from Knit the Sky to make a tiny blue hat to keep his little head warm
1180. Going to church, all-four-together
1181. Board games with Adam
1182. Getting the apartment tidied and reset, in preparation for Adam going back to work and me being home alone with Brooklyn and Tobin
1183. Surviving a long day just-us-three, after a long night with Tobin
1184. Adam being willing to stop by the grocery store on his way home from work so that I wouldn't have to get out in the cold with Brooklyn and Tobin for two things
1185. and him taking first shift with Tobin, despite having work the next day
1186. Sleeping in - it makes long days shorter!
1187. Getting all of my projects caught up/finished before the end of the year
1188. Having the energy to wait up for Adam, despite choosing knitting over a nap
1189. Reading Pick Up and Put Away with Brooklyn, then her helping me put her books back on their shelf
1190. Resting on the couch with Tobin while he slept and Brooklyn practiced peace - I didn't actually get a nap, but it was refreshing nonetheless
1191. All going for a drive together after Adam got home from work - the last adventure of 2014!

In 2014, I counted over two thousand gifts (between my 3-a-day, doing 30+ a day for the month of November, and then continuing that into December to finish out the journal I was jotting them in). It was a wonderful exercise that helped me see the events and circumstances around me in a different light (which is why I'm going to continue counting, indefinitely).

Another project I did last year was Knit the Sky - collecting blue and grey yarns and knitting one row each day in the colors that best represented the atmospheric conditions, ending the year with a scarf (it's currently blocking on a towel in the bathtub). When I got up this morning, even though the scarf is finished, I instinctively looked up. I developed the habit of observing the sky, and it shifted my view of the weather... grey days meant I got to use a pretty alpaca/silk blend yarn, and blues got a handpainted merino from Canadian fiber artists - both a delight to work with, in their own way.

Those two projects worked together toward a single epiphany: grace touches everything. Who am I to decide what is a gift and what isn't? Everything works together toward the end God has designed - even if something doesn't do me good (that I can see - and my range of vision is admittedly extremely limited and darkened with blind-spots) it's doing some good of some sort to someone, somewhere. The sun brings growth and healing, as well as droughts. The clouds bring rain and ice and snow and wind that are sometimes reviving and sometimes destructive. But in everything, every moment, there is grace - if only I will open my eyes (and my heart) to see it.

I began a study today through the book of John, and a verse stood out to me in the first chapter: And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen His glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth {John 1:14} The line between sacred and secular was erased when God-with-us crossed it - now every aspect of our existence can be covered in grace and truth and love and light. And that is the greatest of gifts.

This coming year, I'd like to continue the tangible daily reminder of grace as I fill another journal with gifts - won't you consider joining me?

1 comment:

Kayla said...

"The line between sacred and secular was erased when God-with-us crossed it"...
Yes and amen! The things I once counted mundane have been transformed into some of the most life-enhancing experiences because -- by His grace -- I now see them that way.

Oh, how I wish I hadn't waited so long to learn. But praise be to God that He drew me to this lesson before more time had passed. Thank you again (for the thousandth time) for walking this journey with me and keeping me accountable to it.