Saturday, November 19, 2011

Blessed and Lucky

I spent last night talking with a friend about her trip to Haiti.  And tonight I watched my bus empty when we stopped outside one of the city's largest homeless shelters.  So I'm having one of those evenings where I hug my son a little tighter, and feel thankful for leftovers & warm blankets.

Thankful.  Or just relieved.  This is the season of Thanksgiving, the time to count our blessings.  I stay away from the language of blessing most of the time.  I hear the word used as a synonym for "lucky" far to often, and I'm usually too cautious to use the word outloud.  Because if what I have is a blessing, a gift from God, then why is God refusing to bless someone else?  Why would I be thankful for a God that worked so unfairly?  And where does that put God on the days when the blessings don't come through for me?

And yet we've been lighting candles at dinner lately and saying what we are thankful for.  And it makes my heart melt a little to hear my son say thank you for trains and marbles and mommy and papa.  My heart is very full--from the joy in our little family, from the friends far away who are keeping in touch on this year away, from excitement as we get ready to visit family over the holidays.  I am thankful, but I'm not sure how to express that thanks, or how to encourage thankfulness in my son without teaching him that God picks and chooses who gets the good blessings and who doesn't.

There's more than luck in the relationships that sustain me.  But there's less than divine will.  I'm still looking for the word that fits inbetween.  Any ideas?

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