Last week, I decorated jars.

Attached pretty slips of paper on twine wrapped greenery.photo-11_kindlephoto-23408621

Greg added little openings in the jar lids and I smoothed out the paper labels Heather made, “Give thanks” labels for  front.

Took them downtown, added a little sign to sit beside with Quiet Confidence, Isaiah 30:15 and my name

Calling them “Gratitude Jars”.

I need to make my own now, label it and become diligent in daily recall of blessings.

On my way home a couple of weeks ago, I stopped; another car and mine, waiting for light to change.

Two men on the corner, one helping the other.

One, shaky in his walk, clutching his brown bag, being led by the other down the sidewalk.

For just a minute, I wondered if I should be afraid, should flip the door lock.

I didn’t.

I watched, pausing to remember my daddy and a time he needed my help to walk, memories of his unsteady days.

This was the week of the remembering him 17 years gone.

And the memory of holding him up had nothing to do with drink.

I paused to watch and smiled.

It was a sweet, solemn time.  He had surrendered to love, help and grace in his last months of life.

Another time, similar in scene,  came to mind.  Again, in the car.  This time, Heather, Austin and I.  A man holding a cardboard sign, dressed in clothes that were a little scary and looking towards our car as we approached.

My daughter and I remarked something; I can’t remember what now, not at all kind, I recall.

My son, probably around 8 spoke up as clear as a bell from the backseat…”What if he’s Jesus?”

And the car fell silent.

Pausing to remember even now, the conviction in his voice as he chastised us.

I headed home, the two men in the distance.

Thinking of my son now, knowing he still believes in what he said that day.

I will remember this as a  “Grateful Pause”photo 2-5_kindlephoto-23184054

Last Sunday, “Mr.Bill”  had Children’s Sermon.  He’s the best. He’s animated, unpredictable and loves to surprise them.

I always listen intently and watch their faces as I sit in the choir loft.

His props are the best.  This Sunday, he pulled out a shovel.

He asked the group, “How many of you like to dig in the dirt?”

He paused.  I paused.

And the sweetest memory came to rest.  My eyes misted up just a little and I saw my Heather Analise.

Blonde, blue-eyed, wearing a sun hat.  The two of us sitting together in the sandy field for hours on end. She digging in the sand.  Me, digging my heels into the cool earth while she loaded dirt in her little shovel and then moved it to a pile, only to wedge her little shovel into that pile and move back to the other.

Hours on hours of the nothingness of our blissful play in the dirt with my daughter.

I pause even now, remembering and grateful for the sweetness of my life.photo 1-7_kindlephoto-23255186

A grateful pause.

Grateful Pauses,  I’ll label my jar.

I’ll jot these  stories down and drop them in.

Then, I’ll watch and listen, pausing for more chances to be grateful.

Praise the Lord, my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name. Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits— Psalm 103:1

Linking up with Tell His Story writer, Jennifer Dukes Lee

http://jenniferdukeslee.com/the-best-seat-in-the-house-tellhisstory/

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