I read and read and read because in this moment, I can't imagine not reading... especially this. I can't put it down. It pulls me in and encompasses me and in this moment I can hear nothing else than Ann and her voice... her life story teaching me more about giving thanks and receiving joy.
In the darkness of night with the moon shining on the snow outside my window, I am drawn in. Drawn in to her world... a farm in Ontario with a half dozen children and a farmer husband. While my small town American life with a nurse husband and half that number of children doesn't look much like hers, I find similarities in my heart and in hers.
She wanted more... more to this life. More than just existing and surviving day to day. More than the self induced stress most mothers endure. She sought... she found. She shares her discovery with me. I find myself sitting at her feet through the pages of her book as she points the way to joy with Jesus. I sit here wanting to be more of a Mary and less of a Martha... because I want more.
As my man comes to bed and finds me lost in yet another book, I realize this is it. This is the moment. The moments are ALL the time and I have to start noticing them. Start embracing them. Start thanking the One from whom time began for them. It's not good enough to read another's story and nod in agreement with all that she says. Instead, the way one learns is to seize the moments and practice embracing them... the small, seemingly insignificant moments that add up to a lifetime.
So, for the moment I put Ann aside. I can glean more another time. Ann's book will be there when I come back but I can never come back to this moment in time again. I take a second to recognize and then savor the moment with the one who has faithfully been in this place for almost 17 years. A moment of a heavy arm across my shoulders and the warmth of companionship at my back.
And in this moment... under winter's down comforter in the light of a January moon on snow I hold the hand that has held mine for years and my heart whispers a deep sigh of gratitude to the One who gave me this man... this marriage... this moment...
... and my heart is most grateful for the lesson of gratitude in the everyday moments because it's in the gratitude that I recognize the gift of life is made of everyday moments that are embraced.