"Eucharisteo always precedes the miracle."
Perhaps one of the most life-changing books I've read, in fact, the book that inspired my "intention adventure," is Ann Voskamp's "Ten Thousand Gifts."
"Dare to live fully, right where you are."
It took me longer than a year and a half all together to read this book in its entirety. I had paused many times in between. Not because it wasn't a good book, but because there was so much inspiration on every page. And I am a note taker. If I could have, I probably would have written down every word in this book. I take notes because the act of writing helps secure this information somewhere in my brain. But through the process of reading this book, I began using my highlighter instead. Fortunately for me, it had the same effect and I was finally able to finish the book!
As I am sitting down now to share with you some of my inspirations, it's clear that this book is one of those books one could read over and over again and still find some new inspiration. So I really encourage you to read it, if you have not yet.
What I wanted to share today was how eucharisteo once changed my life, and how if I continue to remind myself of this, and continue practicing eucharisteo, I will continue to experience joy.
At a time when things are not so easy, where it's often hard to find the joy around me, I am reminded, that I must give thanks.
So then as long as thanks is possible, then joy is always possible. Joy is always possible. Whenever, meaning-now; wherever, meaning-here. The holy grail of joy is not in some exotic location or some emotional mountain peak experience. The joy wonder could be here! Here, in the messy, piercing ache of now, joy might be-unbelievably-possible! The only place we need see before we die is the place of seeing God, here and now.
A triplet of stars, a constellation in the black.
A threefold chord that might hold a life? Offer a way up into the fullest life?
Grace, thanksgiving, joy. Eucharisteo.
A Greek word... that might make meaning of everything?
What Ann sheds some light on is how Jesus always gave thanks before the miracle. Not after. Before it even happened. And each time, the miracle proceeded-after thanksgiving.
So I began to make lists of thanks-I began my list of "one thousand gifts." But for some reason, somewhere, I stopped my quest towards thanks. And in doing so I began to lose my joy, and without joy there was no hope. How can I have hope for others, how can I expect miracles without first giving thanks?
"Eucharisteo always proceeds the miracle."
As today begins the month of Thanksgiving, I will continue my tradition of making this month about giving thanks. However, I am delighted to see this November in a new way- because Thanksgiving proceeds Christmas. Might we give thanks for the Miracle of Christmas? For the miracles that are to come through the One who came to this earth to bring His joy, His saving grace.
And after December we start a new year. But I pray this will be the rebirth of a lifestyle of thanks. A thanksgiving that leads to miracles. Miracles for the ones I love. That 2017 will be a year of new life.
"The practice of giving thanks...eucharisteo...this is the way we practice the presence of God, stay present to His presence, and it is always a practice of the eyes. We don't have to change what we see. Only the way we see."
There is so much more to share, as this is only the beginning of eucharisteo. I look forward to sharing more this journey with you.
Join me on this thankful adventure in the month of November!