I recently got home from a family vacation in Hawaii. (Yes, my life is wonderful and sometimes I fly to a Hawaiian island for 5 days. Also sometimes I end up in urgent care on said island to get a cyst cut of my back. Just some perspective for the internet – no one’s life is perfect. Even on vacation in Hawaii.)
I finished finals Thursday night. I had to be at the airport Friday morning. So I was already a little dazed, a little what-day-is-it, a little haven’t-eaten-a-real-meal-in-a-while. Our first morning there, I woke up and did what I do every morning: sat on Instagram for too long. I finally made my way to the kitchen. Got some coffee. Stood on our gorgeous balcony. Read my book. We decided to make breakfast. We decided what to make for breakfast. We made breakfast. We ate said breakfast. We debated what we wanted to do; finally decided on a hike. Changed into hiking clothes. Dang, I thought myself, today must be halfway over already. We just wasted half the day sitting around. I checked the clock to find out it was only 9:30.
I was told of this phenomenon of island time. It’s a slower pace of life, a different mindset to live by. Things might not start on time. Or they might. Who knows. Time feels like a foreign concept – sometimes we’d be at dinner and it felt like 3 hours only to find out it was a 30 minute meal. Other times our 15 minute car ride felt like an hour and a half. What. Is. Happening. Read More
I’ve mentioned before that I’ve joined a Make Blogging Fun Again group. Let’s not talk about how good I’ve been at keeping up with it (aka horrible). With a heavy heart this morning, I opened my inbox. Some ‘fun’ and some creativity seemed like a good idea, so I opened up to where I had left off before – and found myself staring at a prompt on gratitude.
I immediately brightened up a bit. Gratefulness. It’s used to make anyone’s day better, a small trick countless boast of to improve both your mood and your life. An “attitude of gratitude” is a hip thing to have these days; it’s supposed to win you more friends and lower stress levels. And I have plenty to be grateful for. I’ve actually started practicing (what some call) the Prayer of Reflection – taking time each night to reflect on the day, where I saw God show up, what I was most thankful for. Then, from that place of gratitude, praying for the next day, for more of God’s presence, for more awareness. It’s a game changer, people.
All that to say, with the prompt of gratitude, I beyond ready. Let me tell you all about what I’ve been grateful for lately – I reflect on it every night! Let me tell you about the wedding I went to this weekend, the faces I was reunited with. Let me tell you about what God has been growing in me lately, where I’ve seen such unexpected providence. Let me tell you about all the little things I’ve become extra thankful for in my life. Let me write you the most beautiful, reflective, eloquent blog on gratitude.
And then, I stopped, because I remembered why my heart was so heavy 5 minutes prior, why I had escaped the land of newsfeeds and news stories and retreated to my inbox.
I was going to write a status. (Isn’t it funny, how that’s our idea of doing something? I’m gonna go on Facebook and write a status!) I was going to write about the anger, the shouting, the hate filling up my newsfeed. Bombs in New York, bombs in New Jersey. Police shooting in Tulsa, police shooting in Charlotte. It’s been a terrifying week in America, and it’s only Wednesday. And what are we doing? Mourning? Grieving? Rallying together? No, we’re yelling. Read More