The List

Sitting in the doctors waiting room for my diabetic check-up, I picked up a magazine with a woman on the cover in a slick looking two-piece bathing suit. Not my typical choice of magazines but her age was mid forties and of course as I picked it up I went into a mental diatrabe against one's ability to look like this, blah, blah, blah. However, the magazine somewhat surprised me with the content of articles and topics listed.. Quickly being called into the examining room for another period of waiting, I took the magazine with me and hunkered down to read the articles one by one.  Prepared to hate Ms. Covergirl, I decided to scan the article and readied myself to be disgusted as I read about this woman keeping her life in order despite having recently divorcing; it semi caught my interest. Clearly money wasn't an issue so I couldn't connect on that level. Her career seems to allow her flexibility and time with her children at home for a better than average amount of time. Couldn't connect there.

Finally and nearly at the end of this woman's story, something I could totally relate to caught my eye. She was asked by the interviewer how she maintained peace and calm against what could be a chaotic life. Her answer was that she starts each morning with writing a "thankful list of 5 things, instead of praying and asking God for what I want".  HUH???  I was blown away with this recovery plan in her life because this magazine wasn't a typical or anywhere near recovery topic type of magazine. It redeemed her value in life in my way of thinking. As if what I think matters one bit in her life.

So, reading that bit of information stuck with me and the next morning as I was doing my 50 minute commute to work, I began my morning meeting with God. The car is a great place for me to confess my sin, worship or just meditate on His amazing love.  I began the morning with prayer and then thought to myself, "wait, I'm just going to make my list of five things for which I'm thankful"...... easy, right?  Gulp.

I was stunned.  Oh, I had no trouble ticking off five things, in fact you could become quite good at it if you look at life's necessities in your life. If you've got family, food, shelter, clothes and music, you're covered right? You'd think.  I began my verbal chat with My Creator and was calling out my thankfulness one by one.  I started with one son and stumbled around. What's wrong I thought? I realized that while I rattled off a prayer of thanks, I was trying to follow it up with "but, would You please...." I backed up and tried again.  Almost as soon as I said the next person's name I was thankful for, I drifted off into my game plan again as to what God needed to change in that person's life too.

Oh, no. This can't be my way of being thankful, can it? Lord, why can't I just be thankful for the person in my life and let You be the conscience in their life? I'm not Your right hand helper, though I'd like to be appointed to that position I think sarcastically to myself.  I'm humbled and ashamed to realize that I have been approaching My Creator with a heart full of thanks, along with a cart attached of "and while we're talking about you know who, would you mind....." requests.

This week has definitely challenged me to begin my day with thanks and to leave the rest to Him.

How I long for The Wisdom to Know The Difference.