I don’t spend a lot of time thinking about how much I appreciate my spleen or my eyelashes. I mean, they’re doing a good job, but it’s not like I would miss them the way I would my fingers or my eyes.
A few weeks ago, in a moment of stunning grace and agility, I managed to trip over a cat (the cat is a story for another day, but this might be a good time to throw out there that I don’t even like cats) and slam my foot into the brick wall of my home. I was barefoot at the time and somehow managed to slice open the tip of my little toe.
I know y’all just cringed. Sorry about that.
In that moment my little toe, a part of my body that I pay very little attention to and certainly haven’t felt was all that necessary to my general well-being, became extremely important.
Because I could barely walk.
As it turns out, that little sliced up toe carries a much heavier load than I realized. It’s not just added on to the side of my foot for looks. It’s a workhorse.
I couldn’t wear anything except flip flops for five days. I limped and hobbled and shuffled along in a way that would have made anyone watching assume I had suffered a major leg injury. It was seven days before I could tolerate socks and tennis shoes enough to be able to go to the gym and even then the muscles in my calf and leg ached from the extra strain that had been put on them.
All because my unappreciated little toe was wounded.
In the last few weeks, I’ve been thinking a lot about the things that make my life easier—things I don’t even realize are working hard on my behalf. Everything from my ancient washing machine to the UPS driver delivering my Amazon Prime orders to my ceiling fans keeping the air moving on warm Spring days.
Several years ago I began keeping a gratitude journal after reading One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp. In this journal, I record the gifts of grace in my life, and a few weeks ago I crossed the 3000 mark. After 3000 gifts counted, I must admit that my gratitude well has run a bit dry recently. I mean I can always be thankful for coffee and chocolate (can I get an AMEN!), but I’ve been trying to think of something I haven’t already recorded multiple times.
Crossed the 3000 mark this morning. I've been counting gifts of grace since November 2011. I don't write something down every day, and sometimes all I can come up with is "air" or "coffee" :). But when everything is hectic, stopping to reflect on what God has given me helps me remember who I am and how much I am loved. #1000gifts #gratitude
This month, my goal is to be thankful for the little toes. The laundry baskets (not the clothes—the actual baskets). The ink pens (can we all just agree that while quills were cool, they weren’t super convenient to carry in your purse). The OtterBox on my iPhone (because while I tell people I need that level of protection because of my kids, the truth is I drop my phone at least once a day). Hair elastics, pencil sharpeners, and the little bones in my ear.
These things are gifts from the Father—the same Abba who counts every single hair on our heads. My guess is that when I take the time to be thankful for even the smallest gifts, I’ll find myself more and more in awe of the Giver of all things.