As our family gathered together this morning for our devotional time, I asked the boys, “What are you grateful for this year? Why don’t we focus our thoughts on what we really appreciated in 2015.”
One by one, Micah, Jake and Caleb began to list all of the people, events, and things they could think of.
Here’s some of their list in no particular order of importance:
Papa Murphy’s Pizza
PEP (our Summer OC Mission Debriefing Program)
Nana and Grandpa
All of our Family (Many of our Aunts, Uncles, and Cousins were listed)
Our Family Trip to Washington DC
The Happy Blue School
Overflow at Sunset Presbyterian Church (Micah’s High School Discipleship Group)
Our Trip to Gearhart and the Northern Oregon Coast
Claire, Mark and Piper
Being in the States for Most of the Year
Micah’s Trip to Athens, Pompeii, and Istanbul with Gordon and Jeannie
Alpha Omega Academy (Micah’s High School)
Erin and Teresa and Our Trip to Idaho
The Fourth of July Weekend in Manzanita at Grandpa and Nana’s Beach House
Our Morning Walks
Christmas Eve Service at Sunset Presbyterian Church
It was fun to listen to the boys share their highlights. They reminisced with delight! This was gratifying because although it has been an amazing year, 2015 had its share of challenges too. Every year does though. Every year is a collage of joys, sorrows, blessings, disappointments, victories, and defeats. As we remembered the year, we could have focused our discussion this morning on the pain and hardship. Micah, Jake and Caleb could have outlined a very specific list detailing their personal challenges and how they overcame some of them. They could have also shared their failures and disappointments. Because they happened too.
Not today though.
Today, we wanted to remember 2015 with gratitude.
Too often, we focus on the few things that wounded us, embittered us, or could have destroyed us. We forget the long, long, long list of blessings we received through the generosity of family and friends. We discount the wonder of the day to day and the joy of living life. We set our sights on what didn’t come to pass instead of what we did receive this year.
On this final day of 2015, I wanted our boys to remember this year with gratitude. For indeed, this year offered our family many joys – too many to count today – and that’s a wonderful thing!
I hope you can look back upon 2015 with gratitude too!
It’s a great way to end one year and begin another one – don’t you think?