30 Days of Gratitude
Some days are full of shadows and dust.
I don’t know about you, but I have a tendency to think about all the things that could go wrong or that aren’t exactly the way I want them to be. I get stuck in melancholy, and I sink down into the mire of my own mind. Even if the sun is shining, and I know intellectually that there is more right than wrong, there are days when I just struggle to see it. And then, if I’m honest, there are days when I just feel like throwing myself a pity party wrapped up in woe-is-me.
Did you know that David, in Psalm 22, cries out to Adonai because he feels abandoned and left to fend for himself in the midst of those who mock him for his convictions and would love to see him brought low. He has legitimate reason to be miserable and angry. But still he writes, “Nevertheless [and yet] You are holy….” (Ps. 22:3).
I sit in the comfort of my home, with my healthy family. I enjoy the air conditioning inside that lets me escape from the mind-melting heat outside. We are fed. He has provided.
It’s easier to say “yet You are holy” in those moments when the world seems to come together in peaceful, light shades of rest and quiet. It’s not so easy in those moments when the very foundation of my world seems to crumble, dropping into the darkness and shadows of fear and uncertainty. How do I understand “yet You are holy” in those moments?
The word for holy is קָדוֹשׁ (pronounced qadowsh).
I used to think that holy meant perfect, making it perfectly unattainable and inconceivable to a mortal woman who still struggles to make it through the day in one piece. But I think it’s more about being clean and set apart from (thank you Yeshua) by not letting myself get mired down in the muck of worry and fear and anger and frustration.
Granted, I’m human, so that dirt’s gonna happen. Thankfully, I don’t have to stay there in my mess.
So what does all this “yet You are holy” have to do with gratitude?
I can choose to be qadowsh, clean and set apart from the shadows that beckon.
And I do that by choosing to look for, to see the light that breaks through and illuminates the blessings, the beauty in my world.
Then, like those times when I am thirsty and craving a refreshing glass of water and suddenly I see people with their cups of coffee and bottles of Coca-cola everywhere, I start to recognize the things in my life that bring life and light and hope and joy. Those shimmering, glistening sparkles highlighting my days and nights.
So, what if I look for those beautiful things, even the hard things, intentionally for 30 days? Will I be more aware, more in tune with the goodness of God in my life? I don’t know for sure, but I’m guessing yes.