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When it’s hard to stay present

Sometimes I find it hard to stay present. We're leaving for Ohio early tomorrow morning and I'm not ready because I have a lot of things that I have put off doing until tonight. I'm also excited for a weekend of wedding celebrations and then fun at Cedar Point. Beyond that, I'm aware of plans to get together with friends and other things that I'm hoping to do with the last days of summer. So, I'm fighting to keep my mind from wandering to all that lies before me. I'm fighting to stay present with my clients and what I'm doing now, instead of drifting into thinking of what's to come.

Today, I'm tempted to miss the gifts of the present by anticipating the future. Other days, it's the past that catches my attention and drags it from the present. When I replay a conversation over and over and imagine what I could have said differently to seem better in the eyes of that other person. I review choices that I have made and play "What if?" I embrace regret and wishful thinking, which usually leads to feelings of sadness, disappointment and frustration.

Either way, I miss the gift of now. What is God saying and doing right now? How is His unfailing love and incredible grace mine to receive now? How can I treasure this moment, this present experience, and steward it in such a way that I feel and enjoy every blessing? I want to receive everything that God has for me. I want to open my hands and my heart as wide as they will go and take in everything that will fit. I'm choosing to enjoy my present.

August 3: A gift at 10 AM, 1 PM, 10 PM

  • #229: Birthday breakfast at Egg Harbor Cafe with a surprise visit from Michelle and Tyson
  • #230: Combining half of an almond cupcake and half of a churro cupcake for a delicious afternoon treat
  • #231: Looking up through the mesh window of the tent and enjoying the stars

August 4: 3 gifts sitting

  • #232: Sitting down to breakfast around the picnic table
  • #233: Sharing a tree stump seat with mom while we watch Lily throw herself into the lake repeatedly to rescue sticks
  • #234: Eating smores around the campfire and laughing when Noah gets marshmallow stuck to his chin

August 5: A gift outside, inside, upside down

  • #235: My gift outside was our whole camping weekend with walks in the woods and to the lake, eating campfire cooked treats, breathing in the smells of fire and earth and all the good conversations that happened in between
  • #236: My gift inside was arriving back to our delightful yellow house with all its' luxuries at the end of camping
  • #237: My gift upside down was how I enjoyed being dirty the whole weekend

August 6: 3 gifts in water

  • #238: That first shower back and remembering what it's like to be clean
  • #239: Sips of refreshing water in the midst of a hot and sweaty run
  • #240: Clean drinking water from multiple sources in my house when so many go to great lengths only to find polluted water

August 7: 3 gifts in His WORD

  • #241: Seeing how God has mercy when His people humble themselves in repentance
  • #242: The way it often seems written specifically for me
  • #243: God's promise in Isaiah 56:7 to "fill me with joy in His house of prayer" and how often I feel that way when I am there

August 8: 3 gifts in summer

  • #244: The feel of grass between my toes
  • #245: Being outside when it's that perfect temperature that is neither too hot, nor too cold
  • #246: Fun activities like vacations, weddings, recreation and sports, and how it's always easier to find time to read fiction

August 9: A gift hole, whole, half

  • #247: Space in my schedule to read and write blog posts
  • #248: How Christ is making me whole by His grace
  • #249: The delicious half of a veggie burrito that I will eat for lunch!

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