Well, I made it. Thirty days of thankfulness. This has been a most interesting journey. Some days I couldn't wait to get to the computer to write and other days, honestly, I racked my brain right up until the last minute for a token gratitude. Somewhere about the middle of the month, we got so busy that we stopped writing down our blessings, but we still still made it a point to discuss them over dinner each night. So, how has Hallie progressed? Was this the antidote to cure her whining? Well, she is showing some improvement, but I'm not sure if it was due to this exercise or the fact that BigJoel promised her a hamster if she didn't whine between now and Christmas. (I don't think he believed she could actually pull it off and had absolutely no intention of getting her a hamster. But that's the thing about Hallie, she'll call your bluff when you least expect it.) Anyway, did she learn her lesson about being grateful? Its hard to say, but she taught me a tremendous truth. You see, we try to provide a good life for Hallie. She has a nice house, clothes to wear, toys to play with and food to eat. She has friends and family who love her. She doesn't get everything she asks for, but that's because we as parents know that not everything is beneficial for her, like say, a hamster. *ahem* We can see the big picture and despite what she believes, we really are smarter than we look. So it frustrates me to no end when she is ungrateful for all we do for her. Its maddening when she complains about wanting something I know full well will only bring disappointment or even danger. I'm saddened when she does not appreciate the sacrifices we make for her. Wait a minute... that sounds just like someone else I know...ugh, its me! My Heavenly Father has done so much for me, provided for me and even sacrificed His Only Son. Yet how many times do I whine about insignificant things? or bicker with my Christian brothers and sisters? or ask for things that really are not good for me in the long run? So is it possible that God gave me Hallie and her oh-so-unique personality to teach me about myself and the relationship He desires to have with me? I think it is not only possible, but probable.
For all of this and so very much more, I am exceedingly thankful...and humbled.