I like living simply and being generous, so I always feel like I am doing "good" in the thankful and non-selfish department.
...you know how Nick and I just recently bought our first house in June? Let me just be honest here....yes, I LOVE having my own house. BUT, I want it renovated...decorated...Pinterest ready. This takes TIME and MONEY, so that's what I think about...planning how I will get my dream home. I am constantly thinking about the future house that I WILL be thankful for, not my present house that I SHOULD be thankful for.
I grew up overseas...I've seen the poor and the homeless. But, I don't see it often anymore and so I forget what it looks like and how much I have.
Until Monday night.
I went with a group of girls to Whosoever Church to serve dinner to the homeless. After driving to a less than safe side of town, I pulled up and would NOT have gotten out of my car if I had not seen my friends standing on the Church porch. We walked inside and I immediately noticed that the hot air was on high and the smells were not pleasant. My group leader did a short devotional and then everyone filed through the kitchen to eat fried chicken, green beans, mac-n-cheese, rolls, brownies and sweet tea. Many of them came back for seconds and even thirds and some took plates home. They were SO kind. No one was pushy. Everyone was grateful. One man even said "God bless you" to each person who put another thing on his plate.
As we were cleaning up, I learned that we had served many of these people their ONLY meal that day. And that some of them had no where to go and would be sleeping on the uncomfortable wooden church pews that night. I KNOW that people are homeless and starving, but until I see it with my own eyes, it doesn't seem real and hardly has an effect on me.
When it was time to leave, we got in our nice, heated cars and drove over to Redbone Alley and shared appetizers and desserts that we all could afford to pay for...then we all went home...I walked into my warm house, had a hot shower, put on clean clothes, snuggled up in my comfortable bed, talked with Nick and enjoyed the safety of it all.
Over the years, God has reminded me over and over again of "giving thanks in all circumstances" and I want to do that NOW and stop waiting for my "perfect" life. I ALREADY have a life that many people would die for and I should be Thankful EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.