November is my favorite month. Tucked between all the candy and costumes of Halloween and the bustle and busyiness of Christmas is a quiet little refuge that seems overlooked by too many. The fourth Thursday of the month is marked by families gathering around tables heavy laden with decadent food, all too quickly distracted by the daybreak of Black Friday. I think I forget how powerful the simplicity of giving thanks in all things can be.
Shortly after Daniel came home, I had a friend ask me to identify my favorite part of motherhood. The question haunted me for weeks. I would creep into his room at night to watch him sleep and marvel at the miracle of him being with us. Those were my favorite moments. And then, in the morning, he would sit bolt upright in bed and smile, "Hi Momma" and melt my heart. Those had to be my favorite moments. Playing through the day, hearing his laughter echo in the house, listening to him jibber jabber at us, or hearing his feet pitter pounding as he drove his chicken around the house. All of these were favorites. And then there were the moments when he would take a "pit stop" from driving his Tonka Truck long enough to squeeze my leg or climb in my lap for a split second and exclaim a boisterous "Gotcha!" before zooming off again. And then there's the bedtime ritual of two books (and heaven forbid you're tired enough to cut corners with one book! Oh no! He will quickly correct his reader with "TWO boockas!") a prayer and Jesus loves me. We start the "May the LORD bless you and keep you, cause His face to shine upon you, be gracious to you and give you peace" and he folds his little hands and closes his little eyes and a divine grin stretches across his face. That is my favorite part of mommy-hood.
I know all of these little treasures will all too soon morph into other treasures to be enjoyed in our journey to help young Daniel grow up to be the man he was created to be and I catch myself unwisely wishing for the day for his speech to become more clear or for him to get big enough to take himself to the bathroom twenty times a day. But when the invetiable days for those accomplishments come, it will squeeze out some of the current treasures. And while I might grit my teeth a little returning the thousandth "Hi Momma" on any given Thursday, I want to remember that those are all temporty treasures tucked into life.
So today, on this first day of the Thanksgiving Month, I am thankful for the little boy who finally got to come to his forever home and the man who walked with me every painful step to bring him here. I have always heard when a newborn is laid into his mother's arms for the first time, she forgets all the pain of childbirth. I do not know this from first hand experience, but I look at our son and I know he was worth every single step. I am thankful for the Spirit of Perseverance and when that was a bit smothered, the gift of encouragement offered to us. It quite literally was used to put courage back in us with words and prayers. I am thankful, not just for the encouragement, but for the courage given with it. Isaiah 42.3 says, "A bruised reed He will not break. A smoldering wick He will not snuff out." I am so thankful that at the times when our wick was barely smoldering and our faith was so weak, He did not count us out. He bent down, took us by the hand (Isaiah 41.13) and led us to the plan He had for us all along. Thank you, sweet Jesus for Daniel.