Wednesday, July 27, 2011


So I started a new book last weekend. One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp.  I'm barely on chapter 4, and it is already joining the ranks of my top favorite books ever.

The basic idea of the book is {understatedly} all about cultivating gratefulness, and how this cultivation draws us closer into who God is and how deeply he loves and blesses us each minute of each day. Because I could never articulate it as beautifully and poetically as the author, here are a couple of my favorite little passages thus far:

"And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it
to them..." {Luke 22:19 NIV}

I read it slowly. In the original language. "he gave thanks" reads
"eucharisteo". The root word of eucharisteo is "charis", meaning
grace. Jesus took the bread and saw it as grace and gave thanks.
But it also holds the derivitive, the Greek word "chara", meaning
joy. Ah...yes, I might be needing some of that.

That has always been the goal of the fullest life -- joy. And my
life knew exactly how elusive that slippery three-letter word,
joy, can be. 

Deep "chara" joy is found only at the table of the eucCHARisteo--the table
of thanksgiving. ...Is it that simple?

"whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup" {1 Cor. 11:26}
Whenever. Like every day. Whenever we eat. Eucharisteo--whenever;
now. Joy--wherever; here.

The challenge of the book is, ultimately, to start {and keep} a list. A day-to-day, moment-to-moment list. A list of every little, tiny gift of grace that God gives and I notice. A list to make me notice. To help me become aware, to see through my dissatisfaction, discontentment, and greed, to all of the blessings of joy and grace that our good God generously pours out in my life every minute of every day.

So, periodically, I'm going to be posting {and tweeting} bits and pieces of this list {which I hope to compile in both photos and word form, like Ann does in her book}, and hopefully sharing the ways it is drawing me in closer to the God I love, as I learn to love Him more.

Here are a few things from my "Day 1"on this journey to eucharisteo:

1. A day set aside for just Allie & me
3. An elderly man at the children's museum laughing admiringly at Allie's pigtails
6. A husband who picked up dinner
8. Ice water on the 25th day of 100+ temps
9. The noise of the box fan
11. The weight of a sleeping toddler on my lap
15. A chance of rain
20. A plan-less day
21. Allie gently patting the window, thinking she's "patting" the birds on the power line.

...more to come...all the way to 1000.

{{P.S. You can find Ann's amazing blog here at A Holy Experience, and more info on the book - and even read the first chapter - here at One Thousand Gifts.}}

1 comment:

Bon&Bud said...

What a great post! I will be looking into this book!