What do you get when you Drain the Swamp? Why, an alligator of course.
Let’s start off Week 1 with…
A Moment of Gratitude
A couple of days ago I spent 2 ½ hours listening to the song Opus Number 1. Give it a listen and see if you recognize this hit song. I just couldn’t stop listening. Literally. I couldn’t make it stop. I was on the phone…on hold, greeted by a customer service rep, then I was back on hold, then a new rep, then on hold…
It put me in a terrible funk for the rest of the day. During dinner with my family, I halfheartedly suggested we try out the practice of gratitude (mainly so I could practice for my blog post). We all agreed to give it a try. Well, at least my wife and I agreed. My toddler just continued to throw corn on the floor.
We worked through each step…
- Look back on your day and think of a moment (or two) for which you are grateful.
- Consider why this came to your mind. In other words, what made this moment special for you?
- Carry the moment with you throughout your week. Ponder what God might have for you in that moment.
I doubted whether I could think of a moment to be grateful for – not after my horrible day spent with Opus Number 1. But to my surprise, after racking my brain for a while, a memory popped into my head:
1. The moment
My son was scared of a life-size alligator statue at the zoo for several months. Every time he walked by he put his hands over his eyes, as if the “alligator” couldn’t see him anymore.
Today as we walked by the statue, he stopped me and peered out from behind my legs. He grabbed my hand and we walked a little closer together.
Eventually he sat down tentatively beside me on the back of the alligator. I clapped for his bravery. He gave me a proud smile of someone who had just slain a giant.
2. What made this moment special?
After I shared this moment with my wife, I thought about what made this moment special for me. I shared how proud I was of our son. He conquered his fear and it was a gift to witness his courage.
3. Carrying it with me
I kept this moment in my heart and on my mind over the next couple of days. I thought about what God might have for me, uniquely for me, in this moment. What eventually broke through was how this moment reminded me of my relationship with God.
There were moments when I resembled my son – struck by fear, too scared to do anything except to cover my eyes. But I never thought poorly of my son when he did this. I comforted and cheered him on the whole time.
How much more God loves me, even when I’m fearful and unable to move.
Thank you God for your patience, love, comfort, and guidance in my life. Even when I get overwhelmed by fear, you never give up on me.
Interested in giving this practice a try? Here are a few tips I found helpful…
Before You Practice
Decide if you’ll practice ‘A Moment of Gratitude’ with a friend or your family (maybe over dinner, a phone call, or a walk) or if you’d rather write it down in a journal, on your phone, or on your facebook wall for instance.
Sacred Badge of Courage
You might find it helpful to pursue a Sacred Badge of Courage during this practice.
This is a chance to embrace the real you, as God made you. You might feel pressured to think of a moment that is somehow super spiritual. But trust that still small voice within you. If walking to your car and listening to the sound of leaves crunching under your feet keeps coming to your mind, then go with it!
Are you going to practice ‘A Moment of Gratitude’ this week? If so, how might this practice look for you?
Photo Credit: Philipp Zieger – www.philippzieger-photographie.de Flickr via Compfight cc