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  • Sonya Leigh Anderson


Updated: Sep 9, 2019

Photo by Timothy Eberly on Unsplash

It’s Thanksgiving weekend and we’re still celebrating. Yesterday with the Andersons and tomorrow with the Eastvolds. Black Friday today, but I’m opting out. I’m not a shopper, and not one for crowds, so I’m willing to pay extra for less chaos. Kyle and the boys hit the Nike Outlet when it opened last night at 8pm, which is two hours earlier than last year, and four hours earlier than the year before. But that controversy is not the focus of this post.

Blessing is.

A couple of days ago I read something that rocked my week of Thanks. I’m thinking about it still. It was day 26 of Mark Batterson’s 30-day If. Kyle and I have been reading together. Romans 8 and If God is for us… Now the week of Thanksgiving, and this:

“An observant Jew says a bare minimum of one hundred blessing prayers each day! They bless God when they see a comet, put on new clothes, or experience something for the first time. They bless God for smells and tastes. And if something is pleasurable, they bless God… If you enjoy something without saying a blessing, according to the Talmud, it’s as if you have stolen it.”

I love that last line, don’t you? If you enjoy something without blessing God, you may as well be stealing it right out of his hand! (My translation.)

Yesterday at Grammy’s we all wrote our thanks on bright orange notecards. 19 cards full of thanks. We circled the room, and read them out loud, guessing whose thanks was whose. Some were obvious, some not. Two were written in Spanish.

Giving thanks on Thanksgiving is good, but catch this. An observant Jew says thank you a hundred times each day!

A few months ago saying thanks saved me. If you’ve been reading along, you’ll remember. Today’s Manna. Paying attention to God’s provision, each day, and thanking. The practice that kept me sane.

So why stop?

Every day overflows with blessings. Simple pleasures. Provision, faithful and good. I can ignore it and hoard it and steal it. Or bless it.

I choose blessing.

For morning sun and fresh brewed coffee. For the stack of books by my favorite chair. For turkeys slow cooking in crockpots. Boys still sleeping at Grammy’s. Peace in our home and our hearts. Adult kids home from University and Iowa. Teenagers adjusting. Life feeling normal. Jimmy tucking me in bed at night. Felipe beating all but Pop at chess. Nils’ sense of humor, making me laugh. A girl in the family, nonstop with stories. Work that I love. My “harmony” husband. (Explained later.) Light dusting of snow on the lawn. Advent starting on Sunday. Evergreen waiting to be hung. Chores to be done today. (And for me these tasks are a blessing.) New clothes in my closet. Family together this evening watching nieces play basketball. 29 joining us tomorrow. Texts from good friends, wishing a Happy Thanksgiving. A year to remember. God’s faithful provision. A Shalom story unfolding. Not just surviving, but thriving. We’re doing it. Love winning. Fear losing. Becoming a family. Every day blessings.

God – I bless you, a hundred times over.

Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits…

Psalm 103:1-2

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