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Posts Tagged ‘#thankful’

I opened the envelope, with a bit of trepidation in my heart. The manilla envelope dated 1972, was written on in the meticulous writing of my mum, For Carole Wheaton ONLY then, circled were the words, adoption info.

I have known since a very young child that my mum had me as a single woman and that, when they married, her husband, asked to adopt me.

I have been fortunate to have always felt loved, wanted, adored by both of parents, one by blood and both by sweat and tears.

Inside the folded and excessively taped envelope were three more envelopes, two of them yellowed with the years, the third still white, written on the front, This is for Carole Wheaton ONLY.

I first opened the newer envelope. Inside, folded up was an older envelope, a letter from my mum, including the name of the man who is my biological link to life. I moved this aside.

Then the other two envelopes. The first I opened was the final adoption order.

The second one I opened was from the office of the lawyer who oversaw the adoption process. In the letter he says “I appeared before the Judge of the … County Court with the Petition and these documents and the Court is issuing an Interim Adoption Order which will become final in one years time.” I smiled.

Then I lifted the letter, to reveal a longer piece of paper, with a red sticker, stamped with the County stamp, and in bold lettering ADOPTION ORDER … so old-school official looking.

This was simply the best. This was the legal evidence of his pursuit of me to be his own.

Then, because dates have always been a thing for me, a manner that, in so many instances, I have seen the hand of God, I looked for the date of this adoption order …

It couldn’t be … was all I could think.

For, just two years ago (today), on November 25, 2019, my dad …

the only dad I have ever known, ever wanted to know … the father who chose me, bought me with a price (cause I have the invoice for the costs associated with my adoption), the man who raised me to believe I was valued, worthy … then man who gave flesh to my understanding of the love of God the Father, who adopted us in grace …

died, leaving what and who are seen, for that which is beyond the bounds of life and breath.

But, fifty years ago, today, I was adopted by my father. Today is like a birthday for me, for today I was grafted into his family, with all of the legal rights and responsibilities of a daughter born of flesh and blood. I was blessed beyond measure for the forty-eight years with him and how God, through His will gave me such a good father.

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Apparently, when one is applying to the Graduate School of Business at Stanford University, not only does one need to provide proof of academic success, references and an application fee, but also a couple of essays.

One of those essays is to answer the question, why Stanford? That is a pretty predictable essay subject, but the second is a bit more unique …

what matters most to you, and why?

Their website says they want applicants to “write from the heart”.

It got me to thinking, what does matter most … to me?

It would be easy to speak of my life because of my acceptance of God’s love in my life, for where would I be otherwise?

I could speak of my (just about) thirty one year marriage to my husband, his love and constant support of me and my crazy ideas.

My three adult kids … my greatest creations.

The love and continuity of my parents.

Or the entertainment value provided by my brothers.

My job is satisfying and challenging.

Friends are the sugar and spice of daily life.

But then there are the flowers that provide beauty, the sunrises that give hope of a new day, the sound of the waves crashing at the shore, the relaxation and comfort found in the wet nose of an animal companion, the joy of a good story (in written or video form), clean sheets, the sound of a soft summer rain, warmth of the sun on your skin, the smell of the first coffee of the day …

It is almost more satisfying to write the list that to come to a conclusion. To write such a list is to realize that it has no end … for to write what matters most reminds us that our lives are worth living, that we love and are thankful for so many gracious gifts in our lives.

Go ahead, try it … begin to consider what matters most.

I think you will see that we have been given much to be thankful for in our life … from the giver of good gifts.

“Every good and perfect gift is from above,
coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights,
who does not change like shifting shadows.”

James 1:17

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Grateful

When the week began so did the stalking.

Phrases, quotes, devotionals, things said that I overheard … all to do with being thankful. I heard … but didn’t really listen.

Then I happened to click play on a video that a friend posted, and my ears were attuned to the message that had been stalking me all week.

Thankful, grateful … those words and their meaning. Their capacity to alter our hearts, our minds and mood. Their power, through the simple (?) act of choosing them. Choosing them over fear, loneliness, sadness, anxiety, despair.

So, today, let me share a prayer for you, and five minutes of a video that I hope helps you hear of how much there is to be grateful for … in spite of the dark and twisties of life.

Lord,
As the sun rises, as we rise this day …
Remind us to not just lift the bedcovers off our bodies,
but also that we lift our eyes …
to the flowers,
to the trees,
to the bee buzzing in the garden,
to those around us,
to the sky,
to you.
With each rise of our eyes,
may we …
be thankful for what we can
see,
smell,
hear,
touch,
taste.
Lord, this day of Sabbath,
may our choosing gratitude,
turn what we have into enough.
Amen

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