Wednesday, September 9, 2009

26 Blessings

Today is my 26th birthday, and I am celebrating right now by remembering 26 things I am thankful for. So here it goes!

  1. My relationship with Jesus. I was 15 when I became a Christian, and it just keeps getting better. (FUN FACT: my real birthday is 9-9 and my spiritual birthday is 10-10)
  2. My fantastic husband of 3 yrs & 8 months, Eli! We've been together for 11 years now, and I can honestly say that I have never once been bored with him! ;-) Being a wife is absolutely wonderful.
  3. My mom - she is so graciously allowing us to live with her now while we wait for our house in St. Louis to close and search for a new one here. AND she took us all out for sushi last night for my birthday!!! Yummy.
  4. My dad - for blueberry pancakes & hot cheese dip, for teaching me how to ride (and drive!), for always taking care of me, and for many other invaluable life lessons like "God gave you 2 ears and only 1 mouth so you should listen twice as much as you speak."
  5. My in-laws. Sometimes I joke with Eli that I married him for my in-laws. It's not that absurd either. God used them mightily to call me to Him - I might not be a Christian today without their godly influence and love.
  6. My brothers!!! Nick & Caleb. I love you guys! You introduce me to new video games, new music, new movies, old movies, old music, and keep me young.
  7. For friends that I miss. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, but it's not easy. Eli and I are moving away from so many wonderful friends in St. Louis. I am looking forward to many visits across I-70.
  8. 4-leaf clovers with Grandma Bece. Truly, we found over 300. I am one lucky girl to have had a grandmother like her!
  9. Carpet picnics with Grandma Mi. I still think they are cool.
  10. I've had so many opportunities to travel. I am thankful that I have been to so many places and have learned so much from so many different people. Whether it be hiking in the mountains, SCUBA diving in the Caribbean, touring Europe, serving in Latin America or on a Native American reservation, road trips south, camping along the way, OR just a day trip to a new place; I'm always happy to be on an adventure!
  11. Nature. I always feel God's presence is stronger when I am outside - it's so relaxing and freeing. One of the reasons it is nice to be back in Kansas!
  12. The Bible. I don't read it as often as I should, but when I first realized (at Passion 2005) that there are people in the world who do not have access to a Bible in their language, it certainly made me appreciate it so much more! By the way, you can help with that!
  13. Books in general. I admit it freely, I am a book worm. My parents passed on a love of reading that I hope to never lose. This spring, my mom got me a VERY early birthday present - the Amazon Kindle - and I love being able to have access to any number of books instantaneously.
  14. - I think this is my all time favorite site. But in all seriousness, I am thankful that we have so much technology (how else could I write this post!) that makes our lives easier, safer, and more time-efficient (in theory).
  15. Also - facebook, blogging, email, cell phones, and other gadgets that make keeping in touch a little more manageable.
  16. Our dogs (Denver & Cooper). They are endless amusement and have taught Eli and myself so much about parenting and each other!
  17. I suppose I better mention our frog Gizmo too. After all, he was here first. I got him in college. He is 6 years old. Not bad for a tree frog!
  18. ACTS Campus Ministry. I'm not sure how I would have spiritually survived my time at Washington University without the ACTS group.
  19. More specifically, the Bennetts. A.J., Susan, Sierra, & Lucas have been such an awesome family for Eli and me both. Great examples and true servants of God.
  20. Work. I know sometimes it's not fun, but I'm happy to have a job and an income; and a flexible job that allows me to take my birthday off! And will hopefully someday enable me to be a mostly stay-at-home mom. Plus, I actually do enjoy real estate. It's so fun to find that right house for someone and put those keys in their hand.
  21. Hay bales in a field. I know that sound strange, but to me, there is nothing more beautiful.
  22. Our church. We had a terrific church family in St. Louis, but we are already blessed with our new congregation here welcoming us with open arms. They even put us in charge of coordinating the Jr. High ministry. Wow. I'm not sure if I am mature enough to be thankful for middle schoolers yet. Maybe next year? haha.
  23. My health. I've been doing the P90X workout routine and it kicks my butt some days, but I am thankful I can do it (well, almost all of it minus a few impossible yoga moves!).
  24. Dave Ramsey. Eli and I just started doing his Financial Peace University and are learning so much! We've had some tight times, but God has always provided, and it has taught us to trust Him all the more. Now I feel like we are learning to honor God with what He has given us.
  25. Having a home. As I mentioned, Eli and I are house-hunting right now and feel a little homeless. In fact, the "HOME" button on my Garmin is still pointing me towards St. Louis. But, thanks to a terrific family we have plenty of places to "come home" to and are learning that as long as we are together, we are already HOME.
  26. OK, it's cheesy I know, but I'm thankful for YOU! Thank you for reading my blog and partaking in a little CELEBRATION with me!