I knew going into this, that if I read this book, I would be challenged to write down "one thousand gifts".... 1,000 things that I am thankful for. I truly had no idea what I was getting myself into. I had no idea that, as Ann talks about in the book, that this process would become more than a project-- it would effect a lifestyle. I had no idea that thankfulness would envelope my heart through this simple act of writing down the moments. I had no idea that I would walk around my own life, searching for things to thank my God for. I had no idea that it would create an atmosphere of holiness in the mundane.
1. Patches of golden sunlight on a crisp, cool day.
3. A husband admiring his wife from a far.
5. Good friends who stand the tests of time and space.
15. Undeserved grace.
With each moment of paused reflection, each thank-filled statement I am set free. Set free from the pessimistic flip side. Set free from dark thoughts of death, of pain, of suffering, of ugliness. I am entering HIS gates with thanksgiving. I am walking His right path to enter His holy place. I am walking through the door He created.
"I watch the hands move grace on the clock face. I'm growing older. These children growing up. But time is not running out. This day is not a sieve, losing time. With each passing minute, each passing year, there's this deepening awareness that I am filling, gaining time. We stand on the brink of eternity."
"Time is a relentless river. It rages on, a respecter of no one. And this, this is the only way to slow time: When I fully enter time's swift current, enter into the current moment with the weight of me all here. I can slow the torrent by being all here. I only live the full life when I live fully in the moment."
I can't say enough good about this book. And I'm only halfway done. What it has done to my soul, to my lifestyle, to my heart is pure goodness. I am reveling in the presence of my God in a new way. A way full of thankfulness which are the gates to His tabernacle.
I wholeheartedly encourage you to pick up Ann's book. And even if you can't right now for whatever reason, pull out a journal, or some paper and begin writing down one thousand gifts. ONE THOUSAND seemingly insignificant things that you are thankful for. One thousand things that God has given you. Each infinitesimal one will change your life.
*I was not paid or compensated in any way to review Ann Voskamp's book, One Thousand Gifts. I reviewed this book of my own decision and all words and ideas (except for those obviously quoted) are my own.