I do love the holidays...it seems to just be in the air. People who may never speak are now heard wishing others a Merry Christmas. How can that not put you in a great mood? As I'm sitting this morning wrapped up in a blanket, drinking hot chocolate (one of my favorites), my mind is still focused on thanksgiving - not just the holiday that has past but continually having a spirit of thanksgiving. In that light, I decided to make a list of things that I'm thankful for. If you know me well, this makes you laugh because you know how much I do indeed love lists.
1. My Father/Savior/Redeemer/Love - oh how my journey with Him has changed from day to day, but He always remains constant. His love, mercy, righteousness, and grace overwhelms and humbles me. I am honored to be His child and pray that my life is a reflection of that on a daily basis. How can you not be in awe of who He is and what He has created?
2. Steve and Ryleigh - I never imagined that November 28, 2004, I would meet the love of my life. Tomorrow will be 6 years later and my life has been forever changed. The past 6 years have been such an incredible journey with a man who exemplifies Christ and how He loves the church. He makes me laugh and smile when those emotions may be the fartherest thing from what I'm feeling. His love is not based on anything I try to do or what I look like, but solely on who I am in Christ. Steve's top priority is to be in love with our Savior, so that we can serve Him more effectively together. All of this brings me to Ryleigh. I know I have no way of knowing what the future holds. However, the past 7 months have brought a different type of joy to my heart. I cannot wait to hold her in my arms and see her being held by her daddy. My prayer is that we will remember she is a gift from Him and that she already belongs to Him for His purposes.
3- Family - My parents are the type of parents you just don't find anymore. They are still in love with each other 28 1/2 years later and they even still like each other! They both love the Lord and believe that it is only a daily walk with Him that will allow each of us to become who He wants us to be. As a soon-to-be mom, I've realized even more how much I do desire to be like both of them in raising Ryleigh. However, they would both be quick to say that they have made mistakes and our only role model should be the Heavenly Father that we serve. I am thankful for the relationship that we have and even more the relationship they directed me towards with my Savior. We are blessed by their love, support, and encouragement.
My sisters are one of a kind - they are beautiful women of the Lord inside and out. I love that we enjoy spending time together and seek out the time to do so. I have noticed in myself that I am fiercely protective of who they are and what their dreams are. My heart desires only the best for them and I want to shield them from anything in this world that is not necessary for them to endure. Lately, seeing their love for Ryleigh only makes me more thankful for them. The Lord has truly given us a relationship that only He could bless us with.
The Roberts - I will be forever thankful for Steve's parents, first and foremost because of how they raised Steve. As I've gotten older I've realized the important role parents play in our lives and Steve is a reflection of 2 parents who wanted him to be just like his Heavenly Father. When we are together, I feel as if I have been in the family my whole life. Their love, support, and encouragement is definitely appreciated. I am thankful that none of the "inlaw" stereotypes are present here!!
4 - Friendships - This one will encompass quite a good amount of people but I think you know who you are. Our friends are amazing. Whether they live in MS, TX, VA, or Madagascar - they love the Lord and pray for us often. The Lord has given us relationships, no matter where we are, that challenge us to be more Christlike in all we do. The laughter and fellowship that also results from these are just added blessings. What a joy it is to know that no matter where we are in this life, that people love us and are interceding on our behalf.
This was a lot longer than I had planned but sometimes a girl just needs to type for a while. Now it's off to spending some quality time with my sisters in Jackson!!