Thirty eight. There! I said it! That's how old I am. Here I am sitting at my computer at 2:30 in the morning - WIDE AWAKE! I made this silly rule at home that I don't cook on my birthday. We either order in or eat out. We went out for dinner tonight. Our favorite restaurant in town is having Mexican buffet for four days. It was a very pleasant surprise. Yumm! Coffee and tea came with the meal so I had latte, a strong one! So now, here I am so wide-eyed.
In honor of my age, here are 38 things I am thankful to God for: (in no particular order, except #'s 1-7)
1. God. He chose to love me in spite of me.
2. My hubby. He ain't perfect but he's perfect for me. I thank God for his servant's heart. I am one spoiled wife!
3. Josiah, my oldest. He is a talented and smart boy. He corrects my grammar and he always strives to make me happy.
4. Boaz, my middle one. I am forever in awe that God chose me to be his mommy six years ago. It's amazing how much he looks like me! He loves to make me cards and write me "notes."
5. Micah Jasper, my youngest boy. He makes me laugh everyday. Sure, he's a toddler and throws tantrums but he is a sweetheart. I'm so blessed to be given the chance to raise up another boy.
6. My Dad. He always pointed me towards God. His love and devotion for the Lord became my guiding post through rebellious teen years.
7. My Mom. She fussed at me when I got lazy but now I am so thankful she did. She prepared me for my wife and mom duties now.
8. My extended family - both my mom and my dad's sides. I am thankful for the Christian heritage all the way from both sets of grandparents.
9. Marina Cagas, my aunt. She was the one who prayed for me as a young girl that God would call me to be a missionary. She was the one who brought me to Thailand for the very first time in 1996.
10. Music, for the opportunities God gives me to serve Him through that.
11. The love to cook. I've had so many wonderful memories of fellowshipping with friends and family over food in my kitchen.
12. The ministry in Kabinburi. I learn so much about faith, service, and love for God and others.
13. My middle son's birth parents for entrusting us with his life. That's bravery on their part and God's great display of His sovereignty.
14. Thailand, Thai people, and Thai food.
15. Missionary friends. They teach me a lot. They pray for me a lot. They understand where I'm coming from when I feel discouraged.
16. Jenni Starkey, our co-worker and friend. We learn so much from each other. I've known her since 1997.
17. Coffee!!! LOL!
18. Photography and the chance to have it as my hobby.
19. My high school close girl friends. We still are very close and still keep in touch on a regular basis. Thanks to email, facebook, and texting.
20. Shenandoah Baptist Church family (our sending church) in Virginia. We are beyond blessed to have these people in our lives.
21. Financial supporters who sacrificially give so we can be here in Kabinburi.
22. Prayer warriors that faithfully uphold us before the throne of grace so that we won't pack our suitcases and leave the mission field.
23. Running. And the strength and love to do it.
24. My closely knit friends who help me walk in the right path through their friendship, prayers, and encouragement from God's Word. You know who you are.
26. Water at Jenni's house. Even though we don't have running water at our place, Jenni's place is only kitty-corner from us.
27. My flower garden. It's my stress reliever and one of my favorite places to find a subject for photography.
28. Believers in Kabinburi. They are encouragement from God when I get discouraged. God reminds me that these believers know the One, true, and living God because God called us to here.
29. Facebook. I'm serious. I live away from family and friends and facebook is how I get connected with everyone. I don't get as lonely anymore as I did years ago before social networking was born.
30. The opportunity to live in the US for a little while before coming back to Thailand full-time. I met SO many wonderful people. Some of them became like family.
31. Carpal tunnel syndrome. What? I'm thankful for that? Yes. When it acts up, I get to rest and my boys get to do my job. Hahaha!
32. "The Andy Griffith Show" and "Gomer Pyle, USMC" on DVDs. Those are our regular entertainment at home.
33. Christian Thai friends.
34. Non-Christian Thai friends.
35. Our local market just 500 meters down the road from us. It is so abundant with fresh fruits and vegetables e.v.e.r.y.d.a.y!
36. Street side restaurants all around our area. Oh, especially when I'm lazy or too tired to cook.The foods are cheap and very delicious.
37. Thai massage!
38. The last but certainly not the least. Intentionally, written as the last one - God's Word, the light on my path so I can walk the straight and narrow way to the Heavenly Father's heart.
I wrote this in 59 minutes. I could have written more but I had to stop at that number. Praise God from whom all blessings flow. I am one blessed girl!