This is one of the reasons why I'm struggling to offer up particularly heart-felt thanks this week. So, with a conscious effort and despite the fact that Jo only started baking (and decorating) his entry at 9pm last night, I am nonetheless grateful for two boys who show such enthusiasm for such things. Mattman came up with this year's idea on this very date last year when Jo didn't get ranked at all!
So, yes, I'm very glad for two boys who like school and moles and taking part enough to weigh and mix and wash and cut until really far too late into the night! I'm grateful for schools who still give our children opportunities to do things other than tests and assessments and target-setting. I'm grateful too for Prince Charming who, despite a ridiculously stressful day at work, could throw off that level of responsibility and get down on the floor with scissors and glue. And I am most extremely grateful, after all that effort and very sore feet at midnight, that the child did get joint second place. Thankfully plans for next year are already afoot/apaw, and thankfully we seem to have agreed that some forward thinking could be useful...
The rest is harder. I seem to have put my own paws into It. When I put my foot in It, It does usually happen for all the same reasons and It does usually come from all the same faults, but this doesn't ever appear to make me wiser or better or just quieter really. So, I am trying to be thankful for people, for opinions, for decisions made for all the right reasons. For faith and trust and the authority of good men.
I'm not succeeding at that level of gratitude though, if I'm honest. I am genuinely grateful for folk who have said nice things about me and made me feel better about myself, but that isn't necessarily where growth lies, is it? Back to the preceding paragraph then! Maybe I should try to be grateful for opportunities to do something different, a bit like the Mole in the Wall. Maybe I should be grateful for an opportunity to practise respect and tolerance and patience and submission. And be very, very grateful for a God in whom I can place my doubts and fears and know that He at least is smiling over me hard.
The Lord your God is with you,
the Mighty Warrior who saves.
He will take great delight in you;
in his love he will no longer rebuke you,
but will rejoice over you with singing.”
Zephaniah 3:17 (918!)