“You could be living in the blessing you prayed for last year and not even acknowledge it.”
 Bill Johnson

Cheers to today.

It’s currently the end of summer, and although I missed most of it (happens when you go to live in a different country), I’m still kissing it goodbye like I enjoyed every slow evening and unfading sunset. I missed out on some roadtrips and photos taken through a dusty camera lens, but I found something else that was perfect for me. Although it was very, very cold. (Canadian snow is not a myth). ‘Having the time of your life’ looks different for everyone, and I like thinking about how we all have different camera rolls, and a bucket list of future memories hoping to be included. No one is the same, but here we are friends. I like friends.

I’m coming to the point of expecting there to be something good about everything, because my experience with contentment tells me there is. I’m saying goodbye over the back of my shoulder, because my feet are facing forward, and I know that stepping into these new blessings will be more fun if I run at them. I don’t want to miss anything this year, I want to squeeze all the good things out of every experience, leaving behind only the crusts in my lunchbox. I want to be obssessed with my life, in it and involved, forgetful of past disappointments. Intentionally accepting my failures and arguing redemption for every wasted breath. Beaches weren’t meant for Instagram, they were meant to be sat upon, to get your swimsuit dirty and to put sand all through your cheap shoes.

I got home the other night from a really fun weekend, and I was looking through some photos, smiling a bit. Tents, a donut, matching t-shirts. I almost missed it – the thought that, wasn’t it just a year ago I prayed I would be having this much fun and be so understanding of myself? A big life is a mountain, and if you never give up, both in prayer and in self, you will go uphill. I realized that looking back meant I was somewhere further forward, a few rungs above my former self. I have a cartwheel of a life with some incredible people in it, and everyday God does something that blows me away. That is a prayer turned into the present, the wave of grace I heard of. I am living so many small dreams and I realized that they are no longer dreams. They are here, in my room, on my phone, outside my door. It is wonderful to feel full, when emptiness was mistaken as yours for so long.

I think that’s what thankfulness looks like. It’s an attitude, a posture, but it’s also being excited about what God did. You spend time declaring and praying into your future, and then when it comes, you zip up your backpack and run really fast up the nearest hill, singing louder than you thought you could. He knew you, heard you, and was kind enough to satisfy your thirst with an ocean that never worries it will dry up. And that is the moment you stare at the sky and say, His faithfulness became my thankfulness, my portion and my cup.

- mads

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