Friday, February 1, at our monthly MOM’s meeting, Marcy Beaupied guest-spoke for Vickie in the Happy Heart segment. She mentioned the book “one thousand gifts” by Ann Voskamp. The book, which encourages you to focus on seeing the beauty/God in everything, encourages you to start keeping a gratitude journal (looking for one thousand “gifts” to be thankful for).
At the meeting, Marcy took it one step further and suggested we start a gratitude journal with our kids. I loved this idea!
Marcy had actually given me this book two Christmas’s ago as a thank you gift! I was immediately on fire to list 1,000 things I was thankful for! I found myself keeping my eyes so much wider open for all the little things we usually take for granted.
Unfortunately, as I do with many things, I got started and then kind of lost my motivation. I even downloaded the app on my phone that encourages you to take pictures of things that you are thankful for. That was right up my alley. But the journal and the book, and even the app, kind of disappeared in to the bowels of my house. And so did my motivation.
Well, guess what I ran across when I was getting my marriage books ready for MOMs last Friday? The gratitude journal that I had no idea Marcy was going to talk about!!
Guess how many “gifts” were listed in my 1,000 gifts journal? 15!!! How lame is that?? I was 985 short of my goal! I did, however, also find that deeper in the journal, I had listed my “Top 10 things of 2011” and my daughter had made a list too. It was fun to look back on those lists (consider adding that to your journal since 2012 is still pretty fresh in your mind!). I think that extra “top ten” list brings me short of my goal by only 975 :).
Well, having rediscovered the journal, I decided that I had a second chance to get immersed in gratitude. So I immediately started adding to the list and quickly got it up to 20 (yeah, I’m a high achiever).
After Marcy told us about getting the whole family involved, I was even more excited to get the whole thing going again with all of us. So I added a section for each family member.
I got the opportunity to run it by the family the following Tuesday at dinner.
That night, my son had piano lessons after school. My husband, Courtney, usually gets home around 5:30, give-or-take. He had gotten home while Steven was at his lesson. Well, as we came down our street from the lesson, Steven saw Courtney’s truck in the driveway and, as excitedly as a 5-year-old, said “Dad’s home”? He said it like he had just won the lottery! And he’s not 5. He’s a 5′ 6″, 12.5 year old man-child that looks like Justin Beiber :).
I wondered if he and his Dad had some plans or something and he said no – he was just excited that Dad was home. He said, “Aren’t you?” (again, he said this like we should both be jumping up and down doing a happy dance). And I said, “YES”! (minus the happy dance because I reserve that for the specialest of occassions-like in the middle of the grocery store when I’m with my horrified, eye-rolling, teenage daughter).
Well, we went in to the house and right to the dinner table. I pulled out the now-family gratitude journal because I was dying to share with all of them what had just happened in the car (my son’s excitement that Dad was home) and to tell them what I had written in the journal just days before. I saw it as a great opportunity to affirm my husband!
So I shared my son’s excitement over his Dad being home and then I told them about the gratitude journal. And I read to them what I had written only days before.
16. When I get home and Courtney’s truck is in the driveway!
Does this impact you the way it impacted me?! Steven put kid-like words and enthusiasm to what I feel in my heart when I see my husband’s truck in the driveway-a feeling I had just “documented” in my gratitude journal!
And now we had an opportunity to let my husband know what he does to us inside!! Alhough my daughter is a bit more reserved, she also is a gigantic fan of Dad’s truck being in the driveway-but her happy dance happens on the inside!
Well,the whole thing reminded me of a country song – and not just because my husband drives a pick up truck!
Billy Currington sings a song called “Love Me Like My Dog. I don’t know where I heard this song but when I did, I was overwhelmed with a “that’s it!” feeling! I mean who doesn’t want to be loved like their dog loves them?? You can leave for 5 seconds to run and grab something out of your car and when you get back in the house, your dog acts like you just got back from a 2 year military deployment! He literally “smiles” with his tail and his tongue and his paws! He doesn’t know how he lived without you for the past 5 seconds!!! And let’s be honest, when your dog treats you like that, you can’t help but pick him up and pet him and rub his belly and let him lick your whole face (which is really gross if you pay attention to what he does with that tongue on other occassions-but that’s beside the point).
Here’s the chorus:
I want you to love me like my dog does baby
When I come home want you to just go crazy
He never looks at me like he might hate me
I want you to love me like my dog
My son and I realized this week that seeing my husband’s truck in the driveway makes our tails wag! And we told him so!
We should be loving our husbands like “his dog” does. Or like his son does. Or like his daughter does. Or how about this – like Christ does.
If your tail isn’t connected to your heart right now, just start wagging anyway and keep praying. Eventually God will connect your heart to your tail!
I’m so thankful that God put that excitement in my heart for my husband (I had to fight to get it back a few years ago with God’s help!)! I pray that He will do the same for you. I think I’ll make that #21 in
my our family gratitude journal….
21. For putting a new heart in me so that I can love my husband like his dog does.