Thanksgiving

FallLeavesWow, it’s been a while since I last posted something, but that’s also because a lot has happened since then. I’ve realized these past couple of months, that I haven’t really taken the time to celebrate and to be thankful for what’s been going on in my life or just in general, so in the spirit of Thanksgiving, here goes nothing!

For my family…
No matter how dysfunctional and imperfect my family is, God placed me in this family for a reason, and I’m so thankful for that. I’m thankful for all the values and life lessons my parents have taught me, for my dad’s desire for us to see the world, for my parents’ hard work and dedication so that my brothers and I can be successful, for my brothers and all the times we’ve stayed up late playing video games, for all the times my brother took time out of his busy life to help me with school, for their love and support in all that I do, they’re there.

For my dog…
I’m so stinkin’ thankful that she hasn’t passed yet. After having my first dog for only one year, I was so fearful that Candy wouldn’t live for long either, but year after year, she’s still here and still as lively and crazy as she’s always been despite her old age. I’m so thankful that after all the dangerous things she’s encountered that she’s still alive (see my “Expecting the Worst” post). I’m so thankful to have a warm, furry little animal to come home to who is always so excited to see me. I’m thankful that when I had no one to turn to, she was there by my side, licking the tears off my face.

For my friends…
Oh my, I don’t even know where to start. Whether I’ve known them for 5+ years or even just a few years, I’m so thankful to have been blessed with such amazing friends. They have literally stuck by me through thick and thin, and it’s just amazing to see how each friendship has blossomed into what it is today. I’m thankful that we can sit in complete silence and for it to not be awkward. I’m thankful that we can talk about our views on life and on the world together. I’m thankful that we can share about our struggles and that we have this vulnerability with one another. I’m so thankful that when I’ve lost my way, they point me back to the truth and are there to walk alongside me.

For my campus ministry…
It still amazes me on how I ended up in Epic, but I’m thankful that I decided to stick with Epic nonetheless. From where it was when I first joined 3 years ago to where it is now, it’s crazy. It’s crazy how God has been working in the lives of our members and in Epic as a whole, and I’m so thankful and honored that I got to be a part of God’s plan for Epic. I’m thankful that even though the ministry is twice its size that people still feel welcomed, loved, and a part of a tight knit family. I’m thankful that Epic is still a place that makes people want to learn more about God and Christianity. I’m thankful for everything I’ve learned from Epic and the impact it has had on my spiritual walk thus far.

For my discipleship relationships…
I’ve never really been in a discipleship relationship before so stepping into two last year was really new for me, but I’m so glad I did it because it was such a rewarding experience and awesome, awesome relationships came from it too. Of the girls I’ve discipled so far, I would say they have become some of my closest friends. We may not be in a discipleship relationship anymore, but from all the times we’ve met up and invested in each other, it’s been such a blessing and so much growth happened on both sides. I’m thankful for them and all that they’ve taught me, challenged me, and spoke truth into my life too. I’m thankful that we can be weird together, and it’s totally normal. As far as for the person who disciples me, my goodness, I’m so thankful that I have her in my life. She’s been there to hear me talk about my crazy life, she calls me out when I mess up, she challenges me, she looks out for me emotionally/spiritually/physically, she’s helped me process through some of the hardest things I’ve had to encounter in my life, and she accepts me for who I am. She has such a big heart for the college ministry and for all her college group babies, and I’m so thankful for her and all that she’s done for me.

For all the heartache I’ve experienced…
Whether that be this year, last year, or when I was younger, I’m thankful I went through all of that. It was painful, yes, but I wouldn’t be the person I am today if I hadn’t gone through all that hurt. I wouldn’t have learned from those experiences, and then I wouldn’t have known what to do when I experienced something similar later on. I wouldn’t have been able to help others who went through the same thing I’ve been through, and I wouldn’t have been able to grow closer to certain people. I wouldn’t have known who were truly my friends in the end of it all, and I wouldn’t have known who I could turn to in my future heartaches. I wouldn’t have realized that I am a compassionate person who shows an immense amount of grace and patience in tough times. I wouldn’t have learned so much about myself, other people, and about God. So here’s to heartache! Thanks for all the hurt and pain you’ve caused in my life, it’s made me a stronger and better person because of it.

Lastly, for God…
HE’S THE BOMBDIGGITY. I’m so thankful for all the times He’s extending grace to me and has loved in unconditionally no matter how many times I’ve turned away from Him and for all the times I’ve messed up. He’s always there for me, and He constantly seeks me out. So a huge thank you to God for creating me the way that I am, for using me as a vessel for His kingdom, and for working in my life. I’m so thankful that I am His child, and so I say thank You, God, for literally everything. Words cannot express my gratitude and thanks for You.

And likewise for everything else, there are not enough words in the dictionary that can express how thankful I am for everything listed and not listed above, but I have to remind myself to always give thanks no matter the season because it is so easy to lose sight of what’s really important in the midst of our busy lives and to not celebrate what’s going on in our lives too.

Happy Thanksgiving, y’all.

“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” – 1 Thes. 5:16-18

 

Thanksgiving