Today is the first day of our Thanksgiving break, the kids have a week off from school and my work load is considerably lighter this week. I am laying in bed with a cup of coffee, and I just enjoyed a wonderful breakfast made for me by my husband. The kids are watching a movie and all is right with the world. Before you roll your eyes or vomit over this picture perfect scenario, let me just tell you two of those precious children went to bed early last night for whining and throwing a fit, also my house looks like a tornado hit it and spread laundry and toys everywhere. No perfection here, just quiet moments every once in a while(:
When I woke up this morning, I took a second to smell the roses of my life. I mean, to say this is nothing like I thought it would be or believed I deserved would be putting it mildly. My life growing up was a series of disasters and pain with a few good times sprinkled in… and there is really no reason my adulthood should be any different. Well, that isn’t really true, there are actually two reasons and those are the men in my life: Jesus Christ and Matt Hardage. If I could put my gratitude into two boxes and tie them up with bows, that is what they would be labeled, Jesus Christ and Matt Hardage.
See, my life was on a fast track to a place of shame, chaos, and self-destruction. I was running to College to escape the person I use to be, only to get caught up in the same things that kept me from living in the fullness of what God had planned for me. One day I walked out of a friend’s house and ran right into my future… a boy with the kindest smile and warmest eyes I had ever seen. That was the day God allowed me to jump tracks, to turn me in a new direction, and I didn’t even know it!! Matt and I have been through our fair share of heart ache, mistakes and struggles over the past 15 years, and this year has been no different. But we weather those times together, and I can never express my thanks enough for that. He is my best friend, my partner in adventure and difficulty, and my sounding board. He alway tells me the truth, even if it is hard to hear, but he is my biggest cheerleader on this journey called life. I am so thankful for the husband, father, and man he is, and for the life he has worked so hard to give to us.
The only man in my life who is more important than Matt is my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Who would I be without Him? Let me count the dysfunction…. lost, alone, tortured by pain, doomed to a future of hopelessness. But this is not who I am, because I was rescued from that future and that person I used to be. The day Jesus opened my eyes and showed me the truth of His grace, that everything I had ever done or had been done to me was washed away like dirt during a flood, that was the first day of the rest of my life. I was a new creation and when Jesus looked at me, all he saw was a women He delighted in, someone pure and holy because I belonged to Him. The day He truly got a hold of me, I never looked back. I began my journey of sanctification that continues today, as Jesus is changing me and molding me to become more and more like Him. My constant mistakes and imperfections are nailed to the cross one at a time, even as new ones emerge. I will be a work in progress until the day He returns, but the key words I am most thankful for are “in progress.” He will always be with me, working on me, purifying and refining me, loving and cherishing me, using me when He sees fit. Grateful doesn’t seem to be a strong enough word. But I am grateful, I am thankful, I am desperate for Him.
As I relish this moment where all is right with my world, I know any second now we could have a melt down or a fight could break out… but I can’t help but smile and thank God for what I have in my life, imperfections and all. I don’t have to be perfect, it is entirely overrated…because the God I serve is perfect and that is enough.