This post is dedicated to wide open spaces, to shores of trees, to sunsets of neon gold. This post is for movies with family, for walks to the library, for scrambling under the “stairway closed” sign to reach it at the top of a hill. This is for sunshine, the birth of new grass, the squelching sounds of a nectarine. This is for books, for podcasts, for Jesus, and the glory of coming home.
Living in Wisconsin, where the winters can sometimes last for nearly half of the year, I’ve traditionally said that if you can make it past February, then you’ve survived through the worst of it. It’s not as common to see massive blizzards much past that point, and if you do, the coming warmth of spring usually melts them come March and April. If you can just make it through that dreary landscape of half-melted snow and ice, the gray skies, the impetuous weather, then you’ve made it, you’ve survived.
This year, things have been different, and I honestly think it’s been the best February I can remember.
To say little of the beautiful weather (I’m writing this with the windows open at a balmy 53 F) and some of the most radiant sunsets I’ve ever seen–though the magenta and liquid gold hues I’ve seen are most certainly worth mentioning–I think, generally, the reason is gratitude.
Every day, I get to drive to and from work through beautiful countryside dotted with cows and horses, tall, bare-branched trees streaking the sun in my eyes. I currently work with my father at a company that has always treated me with great kindness and affection, and will soon be starting a new job with a company that I can already tell I will like, with a giant tank full of local fish at the front desk and a CEO who brings in her dogs. It will be a job in my desired field, helping other writers and learning and growing myself.
I have a clearer vision of my future too, a new commitment to the work I feel God has called me to, the very work I’ve always desired. I’m gathering resources, finding new friends, finally chasing my dreams not with half-expressed desires or dreams of grandeur, but with hard work, greater humility, and a deep set desire to see others succeed. I will work mere minutes from the library, and live minutes from another.
Life is good, God even greater. I live every day with a fullness in my heart, an irrepressible gratitude for the little things here that God knows I love, for the things He’s blessed me with and the reasons He’s called me home, my family, my friends, my work. And while life is not without trouble (whose is?), it is amazing, not because of me or what I’ve done, but because of Him, because all of these things, all of the things I have to be grateful for, have come from above, like all good gifts, and I am so incredibly grateful to know that my heavenly Father loves me, that he provides for me, and that He is guiding me on the way.
Thank you, God. You’re the best.
P.S. What do you have to be grateful for? What’s going on with you? How is your February? Tell me below!