Last night, I found myself deep in thought while clearing the approximately 6″ of snow from my driveway. The last time I distinctly remember being deep in thought while clearing snow, instead of simply being irritated at the inconvenience was April 18th, 2013. That night, I posted this to my Facebook page:
I’m done listening to people complain about the weather. As I started to get mad at my snowblower for going on strike, I started thinking. Yes, the snow is inconvenient and can be a lot of work. You know what else is inconvenient? Training months for a marathon you don’t get to finish. But, I can guarantee that the father who lost his son at the Boston Marathon would shovel every one of our driveways to have his son back, his daughter whole and his wife healthy. So today, thank God for your family, your health and the fact that you can shovel your driveway or build a snowman with your kids.
On my way home last night, I was listening to Winter Share on KTIS 98.5, the local Christian radio station. Winter Share is their annual telethon to raise funds to keep the station financially funded throughout the year.
During Winter Share, they had a representative from the Salvation Army talking about their toy store, where parents can choose Christmas gifts for their child(ren) when they wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford them. He shared the story of one woman he met a few years ago who had only been able to buy each of her children a candy bar for Christmas the previous year and the happiness she displayed at being able to give her kids a better Christmas that year. He also spoke about the circumstances that often lead families to needing the assistance of the Salvation Army – medical issues, job loss, or death of a family member.
The point here is that the stories I heard on KTIS during my drive home, coupled with remembering thinking about the Boston Marathon victims the last time I cleared snow, I couldn’t help but count my blessings. On a very small, insignificant scale, the snow blower worked wonderfully last night. On a much larger scale, my family is healthy, I have a job, and I am able to afford many luxuries. Heck, I own a home and therefore have a driveway to clear snow from.
All year, I am so very thankful for everything I have, but the holiday season in particular is a time to give back to those who aren’t so blessed. What if the thing I gave, whether it be a toy, a donation to a charity or items to the food shelf, was THE thing that changed someone’s holiday season for the better?
I know many people take on Acts of Kindness challenges during the holiday season and I’d like to encourage everyone to do just one small thing for a stranger. See what kind of blessing it returns to you, just for fun.
This holiday season, I challenge you to let each snowflake (or each Christmas light for those of you in non-snowy areas) be a reminder of the blessings you have in your life. Take a moment to be thankful and cherish the moment – even if you’re stuck in traffic or shoveling snow in that moment. Let your blessings come through snowflakes.
If you haven’t heard the song Blessings by Laura Story, please take a moment to listen as it’s the inspiration for this post.