Heart Art 6.12 | One Thousand Gifts Giveaway

"Thanksgiving always precedes the miracle." That quote, by Ann Voskamp, is one of my favorites from her book One Thousand Gifts. Really, I could sit here and write hundreds of quotes from her book that became beautiful and living words to my soul this spring. Like, for instance, her quote that I used for this month's installation of Heart Art: "God is always good and I am always loved." 

Last Thursday, the boys and I began our usual bible study morning routine-- piling into the car after hurriedly swallowing bites of breakfast and throwing on our clothes. (It's the downside of having really good sleepers on your hands, early appointments that is. Wait, is there really any downside to having good sleepers? I stand corrected.)  Last Thursday, I also brought along a tray of banana bread, a dish of nectarines and blueberries, bright yellow and white striped napkins, and a box filled with calligraphed words. It was our last bible study meet-up before breaking for the summer. It was also my turn to bring in refreshments and I was very excited that I, number one, actually remembered, and, number two, didn't burn the banana bread! 







I was pulling a squirmy Jobie out of the car when I turned to see Ann walking in with a flat of fruit to share, her two grandbabies following behind.  As I walked into our room, I realized that I was interrupting Margaret and Darlene as they prayed together. If I close my eyes, Margaret is my grandma. The same Pennsylvanian accent spills from her mouth. Her purple sweater makes her eyes shine bright and her enthusiasm at the news of my husband taking a pastorate makes me smile-- a thank-you-for-sharing-this-moment-with-me smile. My friend Zondra walks in amid the smiles and laughs and I think about how much I will miss this gal. On Sunday, I fought back tears as I watched her sing so freely and openly, just as her friendship to me has been over these last short months. Graeme calls her son, Bear, his best friend. Pam and Karen join in and we talk about the week, our prayer requests, our families, our joys, our sorrows, our lives. And, after all of that, we pray. Someone opens and then we chime in with popcorn prayers as God brings different things to our minds. Sometimes twice or three times. And after we pray, we talk more. We sit long and talk about the gift of giving thanks and how it's changing our lives! How this giving thanks to God is changing our view of every day moments-- the good, the bad, the ugly-beautiful-- and how when we give thanks to God, at all times, he will take all of it and turn it into joy for our souls. That's the miracle! 

If you've never read Ann Voskamp's One Thousand Gifts, here is an opportunity for you to do so. Through the kindness and generosity of both Ann Voskamp and Zondervan, I'm able to give away a copy of One Thousand Gifts. (Also, I'd like to include a copy of the calligraphed quote-- God is always good and I am always loved.

To enter the giveaway for One Thousand Gifts and the calligraphed quote, please tell me, in the comment section below, something that you are thankful for today. That's it! (Giveaway will be open until next Thursday, June 13th.) Also, if you'd like additional entries, feel free to share this via facebook or twitter!

27 comments:

  1. I am so very thankful for my tight knit family that mean the world to me!

    ~Julia

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  2. Anonymous5:18 AM

    Thankful for the rain that waters my butterfly bush!

    Janet
    jbaehrel@hvc.rr.com

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  3. What am i thankful for....
    ...above all the saving grace and mercy of Jesus Christ. Without that everything else i'm thankful for wouldn't be possible.
    Amy
    a l o v e b l o g 9 2 6 @ g m a i l . c o m

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  4. I love this post. I am thankful for you and the beauty you share here. I always know I'll be encouraged and refreshed. So happy for you guys and this joyful season!

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  5. What a wonderful blog! I just found this via your dear MIL-Nana! I love how you write and will definitely make it a regular stop!

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    1. Kathy,
      So glad you're here! Hug our Nana for us!

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  6. I am thankful Ford medication that helps me feel better. It's been rough week and i'm currently getting much needed medication infused into my body!
    Laurakdunning@gmail.com

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  7. So very thankful for His strength for today.

    P.S. Shared on FB and Twitter too :)

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  8. I am thankful for blogs and the Christian women who
    take the precious time to write them...like yourself
    and Ann Voskamps 'Holy Experience' to encourage all of
    us out here. The daily encouragement you all give
    to us and each other....sisters...how we need each other
    and the constant reminding who we are in Christ and
    the pushing on to fight the good fight and to know that
    we are with each other and most of all His promises which never
    fail. Thank you and God bless you for all the encouragement and love
    shown here, I love to visit, Corinne

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    1. Thank you so much, Corinne, for your kind words here!

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  9. I am thankful for a husband who loves, who forgives, who pieces the brokenness back together.

    I loved this book and I love this quote. Thanks for doing this!

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  10. I am thankful for THE God who loves me in spite of who I am, an ugly sinner saved by grace, and I am relying on Him to make me the creature He wants me to be. He knows that in the 49 years He has given me I have fallen so short of even the slightest measure! But God is good!

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  11. Thankful for friends who encourage us in the Lord and run the race with us:)
    The husband and I have been talking about God's love for us - this could be a long story - but the calligraphy would be so perfect in my kitchen right now - to remind me to delight in God's love for His glory.
    btw, loved those milk glass mason jars from Barb's book opening pictures you posted. I had to create some for Cole's birthday party and they turned out so sweet. And you know me, I'm not a crafty girl! It's funny the things our kiddos cultivate in us when we are supposed to be cultivating them!
    Thanks for all you share here. I shared on FB too.

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  12. I am so thankful for sunlight. It is life giving for flowers, but also for me. On any given day, when the sun is shining, my husband hears me remark about the beauty of the day at least a hundred times. I am in awe that it is so far and yet we can not only receive light, but warmth. I love learning to photograph it. I love the way it wakes me up in the morning. I love that it is a true reminder of what Yeshua will look like to our simple eyes.
    (also I am so thankful for a moment to catch up with your writing! We have been so busy lately that all blog reading and writing has taken a side step, I missed your beautiful words!)

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    1. Maggy,

      I totally get every word you've written about light. Also, I'm way behind on reading my friends' blogs. I'm planning to catch up soon and you know you're on my list! (We're moving in 5 days, did I mention that? So as soon as things settle down, I'm catching up with everyone!)

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  13. I am very thankful that tomorrow i'm meeting a beautiful friend and her sweet family for a little hike at Multnomah Falls ;)

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    1. Ah! I can't even believe you live here and I get to see you in person! Loved hiking with you all, friend!

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  14. Heidi W11:13 AM

    I'm thankful that this Friday is my husband's last day of "school." He's been in school for 27 years of his life, so this is a big deal to us!

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  15. I am thankful for my wonderful, loving and patient husband who is my true best friend.

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  16. I am thankful that God always provides exactly what we need when we need it - even when we don't get what we want.

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  17. I am thankful that the Lord is truly the Great Physician and our Shepherd even in the Valley of the Shadow of Death. We can trust in him, no matter what he lays before us because of his goodness & faithfulness. Some friends just had their 14 year old son come out of a scary surgery to remove a tumor from inside his spinal column. No word on whether or not it is cancerous yet, but through the surgery really well. Thankful that God's plan is always good, no matter the outcome.
    I'm also thankful for 1,000 gifts and the captivating way Ann Voskamp writes to help us more fully comprehend the power of eucharisteo.

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  18. I am truly thankful for the incredible opportunity we just had as a family to fly overseas and experience such new people and places. My first surreal moment while in Istanbul actually happened while I was seated in the front seat of a taxi. I was completely in awe of all that my senses were trying to process. New sights, new smells, new architecture, history, colors, dress, etc. And at a stop light, I looked out my window across traffic to a row of people waiting to cross the road and get on with their busy lives. I slowly scanned the row of natives thinking about how different their lives must be to my own. Then my eyes met another; a young women about my age with beautiful, kind eyes. And we didn't part glances as would typically happen. But we let the gaze linger, both simultaneously curious, and I extended a smile her way, as a hello. And without sweet regard she smiled back. And then the discourteous taxi driver whizzed us off through the green light on our way. I will never see her again, I am sure. But it was this beautiful little captured moment that I will never forget. And I am so thankful for how much my heart was opened to these people of Turkey while we were there.

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  19. Anonymous8:36 PM

    I am so thankful that I received a job opportunity 2 weeks before I am getting laid off. All though a cut in pay God has truly answered prayers!!!!

    denny1one@verizon.net (not sure what select profile is :(

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Thank you so much for reading here and sharing life with me!