November 20, 2015

(in)courage: Surprised by Good


“Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good; 
His love endures forever.” {Psalm 107:1 NIV}

Three years ago, our family hosted Thanksgiving dinner for the first time.

I’d waited a while to do it. We had lived in our 100-year-old farmhouse for more than a decade. We had a formal dining room. I knew how to cook a turkey.

But established traditions called for us to spend Thanksgiving Day with my husband’s side of the family one year and with my parents at their house the next.

That year, we were supposed to be at my parents’, but my mom graciously agreed that my little family could host at our house instead. She and my dad would be our guests, along with my brother and sister-in-law and their two children.

I dreamed of how the day would go. It would be cold and gray and dreary…perfect for a fire in the fireplace and cozy indoor games. We would linger over dinner, taking time to savor each dish and share our thanksgivings around the table.

I would set the stage in the dining room ahead of time and then close the double sliding pocket doors. When our company arrived, I would slide the doors open with a flourish to reveal a Norman Rockwell-esque scene.

“Happy Thanksgiving!” I would declare. Probably, there would be applause. Probably, it would be like a Hallmark movie. 

Except, of course, it wasn’t.

Join me over on (in)courage for the rest of this story that I love so much...


17 comments:

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    1. Thank you, Michele...and thank you for your comment there, too! :) Happy Thanksgiving to you and to all who gather around your table!

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  2. Don't you love how God surprises us! Thanks for sharing at Grace & Truth :0 Now I need to follow your post to read the rest!!

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    1. Thank you, Johanna! And may God surprise you with Himself and with all manner of good things from His hand this Thanksgiving--and beyond!

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  3. I needed to read your story this year, Elizabeth. :) Thanks so much for sharing it!

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    1. Well, Katie, that is lovely to know, because honestly, I MYSELF need to read my story (again) this year. ;) Thank you for taking time to stop by...have a glorious Thanksgiving!

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  4. This was a great post! I headed over and read your post but couldn't comment because I can't sign into my discus account.
    There is an awesome facebook group called Christian Women Bloggers, if you aren't a member and are interested it is a great group of ladies!
    My days often go like yours, normal days- Thanksgiving days, I have a picture in my head of how it will go and it more often than not does not go like I planned. But since I started following God 2 years ago, it has become easier to let go of what I think should happen and go with what is happening.
    Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Thank you so much...I'm sorry for the trouble commenting there, but I thank you for taking time to leave your kind thoughts here! I'm a very grateful member of Christian Women Bloggers! :) You are right: it is a great group! And I love your testimony of the difference following God has made in your outlook and approach to the unplanned. Blessings to and on you this Thanksgiving and in the Christmas season ahead!

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  5. Congrats on getting published with InCourage...such a treat!

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    1. Thank you, Sarah! I WAS rather, er, ecstatic! And I love how God works: I had submitted a piece I loved during the last "open season," but it wasn't accepted. Being easily discouraged (oh, the irony), I decided I'd give up on the whole idea, but when I saw that "thanksgiving" was a theme for the last submissions window, this post immediately came to mind. WHICH was a God-thing, because I love this story so much, but I would not have been allowed to submit it if they'd taken the previous peace. All of which is probably more than you wanted to know, but there it is...to God be the glory! Thanks for stopping by, and Happy Thanksgiving! :)

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  6. I love this, Elizabeth. I commented on the other site, thank you for sharing with Thankful Thursdays.

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    1. Thank you so much, Lori! Thank YOU for hosting Thankful Thursdays...what a lovely reminder that thankfulness is not only or even mostly for Thanksgiving Day! And thank you for your kind words over on (in)courage. Here's my reply from there in case you don't see it: "Thank you, Lori! I always want to know what's going to happen and how it's all going to play out, but I am reminded that faith in what has happened is not really faith but gratitude. Thank you for stopping by...have a blessed Thanksgiving!"

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  7. Thanks for linking up at Mondays @ Soul Survival! Hope you are having a blessed Thanksgiving week-end.

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    1. Thank you, Donna! It WAS good! :) I pray yours was as well. Thank you for hosting Mondays @ Soul Survival!

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  8. I'm featuring you tomorrow at Women With Intention Wednesdays! :) I loved this post, thanks for linking at Women With Intention Wednesdays!

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    1. Oh my goodness...thank you SO much, Jenny! Bless your heart! Thank you for so graciously hosting Women With Intention Wednesdays!

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I'd love to hear from you! Feel free to tell me what you really think. Years ago, I explained to my then-two-year that my appointment with a counselor was "sort of like going to a doctor who will help me be a better mommy." Without blinking, she replied, "You'd better go every day." All of which is just to say I've spent some time in the school of brutal honesty!