I have chosen to no longer live in the land of Regrets. Regrets had a way of pulling heavy against my soul. They eventually made my feet so heavy that I could not take the next step. They rendered me useless for today.

But looking back and letting the past shape my NOW because of the experience gained, that’s different.

So here are ten things that I have come to know thus far as I meander through life’s adventures:

10. I don’t go anywhere with a complaining attitude. It’s really all about my heart in life. Because I always react in view of it. It shapes my thoughts and my actions. If my heart is not settled, I don’t do too well. And if I complaint, it stops me from seeing what’s really there.

9. If I am going to do it, it’s worth giving it all I’ve got. Because a half-done job is a waste of time and energy, and it speaks of my carelessness, of its lack of value in my eyes. Because a well-done job brings joy to my heart and fruit in the lives of many. Enough said.

8. When I am listening to someone, I should really, really listen.  With my heart, and my hands and my eyes and my mind. Listening is one of the most active things I can do, and one of the best ways I can love people. Because when I really, really listen, the person who is talking senses that they are cared for. And when I really, really listen, all of my judgments fall to the ground and I find myself falling in love.

7. I do my best work when I am motivated. Give me a purpose and I am on fire.

6. I need my girlfriends. I was not meant to do life on my own, and it is totally unfair and foolish of me to expect my husband to meet all of my needs for friendship and fellowship. There is just something about hanging out with girlfriends that nothing else on earth can compare to. They get me, and they accept me just as I am, quirkiness and all.

5. Time with Jesus non-negotiable. I don’t do too well in life if I don’t take time out to be alone with God on a regular basis. Because that’s where I can let go of all my frustrations and burdens, recharge, refocus and receive new mercies to go on. Without my time with Him, I am just a big mess.  It’s as simple as that.

4. Things taste better with butter. Not much more to say about this one.

3. Some things should never ever be taken for granted. Like the love of my children, or the provision on my table. All of it is a gift from heaven, from the matches in my drawer to the scarf around my neck. From the faithfulness of my husband to the smile of my friends. From the warmth of my house to the trees in the forest. The more I verbalize my thankfulness, the more I enjoy my life.

2. People are not the sum of their belongings. Oh my goodness, this one is so important. I don’t know that I ever thought they were, but there was (is?) still a kind of dichotomy in my judgment of people and it has to do with where they are at in life intellectually, emotionally, financially, and every other -ly there is. Yet before they are anything else, people are created by God to be accepted, loved and nurtured just because they are.

1. God is. Not only is He because He is, but He is relevant in every situation, every thing I ever face, every decision I ever make, every breath that I take.

Now to go from knowing to living in view of these day in and day out, that’s the next step…

Cultivating Thankfulness with Ann Voskamp

one thousand

#496 Homemade barley soup on a cold day

#497 Sitting in the living room and listening to my grown children talk with each other about their lives.

#498 Seeing clearly that Jesus is the Mind of God manifested, thus THE WORD

#499 The sun shining through the windows in the dead of winter

Sometimes, I link up with any or all of these wonderful writers: Hearts 4 HomeSDG,  Hearts Reflected, WLW, EOA, Things I can’t say, Growing HomePlay Dates with GodMonday Musings, Hear it on SundayInspire Me Monday, Tell me a Story, The Better Mom, a Mama’s StoryInto the WordIn and Around Mondays,OYHT, Gratituesday, Titus2Tuesdays, ExtraordinayLessons from IvyDenise in BloomSweet BlessingsFaith Filled Friday, Finding Joy, WholeHearted Home