Musings from the Threshold

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The Grace of Gratitude

Yesterday was a rough mothering day.
My Blessings were human. I was human. We all fell down, and our human-ness scraped against each other.
It was not an epic fail, but neither was it full of His grace and love as it should have been.

In the midst of the scraping, it was time to feed the nursling.
I escaped to the still quiet of my room. Gave nourishment. Received grace.
As his chubby little body melted into mine, I breathed. I calmed. My heart filled with thankfulness to replace the frustration.

And I wondered…
When the youngest children left in the house are angst-ridden tweens and teens with a still unfinished mother,
how will He deliver grace to this scraping sinner?

I had no doubts about the giving, just curiousity as to the form.


This morning, I realized that in the busy-ness of yesterday, I had not posted thanks.

As I mentally continued the counting of gifts, I was reminded that the thanks are another vehicle by which He gives grace to this fallen woman.
I give thanks; He gives grace. No matter the season.
May I remember this in the scraping moments.

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice.
Let your reasonableness be known to everyone.
The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

Philippians 4:4-8

Gifts #123 ~ 144

Grace through chubby cuddles
Grace through gratitude
Counting gifts with my Blessings
A gift counted by a young one – “People who are kind and gentle”

The joy and release of a handmade Christmas
Wallpaper samples
Mod Podge
Scheming good things
The amazing physical home with which we’ve been blessed
The more amazing eternal home that awaits

Laughter with my love

Advent anticipation that makes the whole month a season of wonder in the Saviour
God the Provider
The Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world
God’s faithfulness to His promises
Christmas music

Growth in the lives of loved ones
Grace in the growing
The Marvelous and Wonderful love of the Father
Growing connected to new “family”

holy experience

This Week’s PHSS (Psalms, Hymns, and Spiritual Songs) + Gratitude Monday

Our hymn this week is Awake, My Soul, In Joyful Lays. Here are the lyrics, with some of my favorite lines in bold:

Awake, My Soul, In Joyful Lays
by Samuel Medley

Awake, my soul, in joyful lays,
And sing thy great Redeemer’s praise;
He justly claims a song from me
His lovingkindness, O how free!
Lovingkindness, lovingkindness,
His lovingkindness, O how free!

He saw me ruined by the fall,
Yet loved me notwithstanding all;
He saved me from my lost estate –
His lovingkindness, O how great!
Lovingkindness, lovingkindness,
His lovingkindness, O how great!

Though numerous hosts of mighty foes,
Though earth and hell my way oppose,
He safely leads my soul along
His lovingkindness, O how strong!
Lovingkindness, lovingkindness,
His lovingkindness, O how strong!

When trouble, like a gloomy cloud,
Has gathered thick and thundered loud,
He near my soul has always stood –
His lovingkindness, O how good!
Lovingkindness, lovingkindness,
His lovingkindness, O how good!

Often I feel my sinful heart
Prone from my Jesus to depart;
But though I have Him oft forgot,
His lovingkindness changes not.

Lovingkindness, lovingkindness,
His lovingkindness changes not.

Soon I shall pass the gloomy vale,
Soon all my mortal powers must fail;
O! may my last expiring breath
His lovingkindness sing in death.

Lovingkindness, lovingkindness,
His lovingkindness sing in death.

Soon shall we mount and soar away
To the bright realm of endless day;
And sing with rapture and surprise,
His lovingkindness in the skies.
Lovingkindness, lovingkindness,
His lovingkindness in the skies.

This treasure is #1 in Hymns of Worship and Remembrance. The music with which I’m familiar is written by William Caldwell. I found sheet music, including chords in a pdf for that tune.

Psalm 104.33-35 is our Scripture song this week. One of my Gospel Chapel favorites.
I will sing unto the LORD as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have being.  My meditation of Him shall be sweet, I will be glad (I will be glad) in the LORD.  Bless thou the LORD, O my soul! Praise ye the LORD!

We’re adding in a little chorus this week, both because we love to sing and because I thought it would be fun to add a “spiritual song” to our “psalm” (scripture song) and “hymn” each week. Our focus this month is giving thanks, and I love this reminder.
Count Your Blessings
Count your blessings, name them one by one.
Count your blessings, see what God has done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one.
Count your many blessings, see what God has done!

And speaking of counting blessings…
#’s 79 – 98
Fresh Juice made with loving hands
Forced Relaxation
God-timed visits with grandparents and friends
My Mama’s sweet voice on the other end of the phone line
Late night IM’s with my Papa
Shared tears
Shared laughter
My sin debt – paid in full
Giveaways won
The Ultimate Giveaway – eternal life – so precious and costly, yet freely given
God is good. All the time.
Throne access
The written Word in abundance
The Word hidden in our hearts
The first Adam, picture of the coming second Adam
The Second Adam, completion of promise
Bulbs safe in the ground
Dirt under my fingernails
First lard rendering successfully completed
Spray-painted candlesticks

holy experience

Psalms, Hymns, and Spiritual Songs

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly,

teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom,

singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,

with thankfulness in your hearts to God.

Colossians 3:16

We recently added something to our morning routine of memory work and Bible reading. We choose one hymn and one Scripture song to focus on each week, and sing them daily (or as faithfully as we can). The Blessings are loving it, and so am I.

The Father has used hymns often in my life to remind me of His truths, and I want for our Blessings to have the rich heritage of hymnody. I think that unless we are deliberate about preserving it, our children/grandchildren are likely lose that heritage.

I’d like to make a practice of posting our hymn and Scripture song each week. Prior to this week, we’ve sung Great is Thy Faithfulness, Lamentations 3.22&23, A Debtor to Mercy Alone, and I Chronicles 29.10-13. We’re currently singing A Thousand, A Thousand Thanksgivings and Philippians 4.4 (Rejoice in the Lord Always).

A Thousand, A Thousand Thanksgivings

Thou Life of my life, blessed Jesus,
Thou death of the death that was mine,
For me was Thy cross and Thine anguish,
Thy love and Thy sorrow divine;
Thou suffered the cross and the torment,
That I might forever go free—
A thousand, a thousand thanksgivings,
I bring, blessed Saviour, to Thee!

For me Thou hast borne the reproaches,
The mockery, hate and disdain;
The blows and the spittings of sinners,
The scourging, the shame, and the pain;
To save me from bondage and judgment,
Thou gladly hast suffered for me—
A thousand, a thousand thanksgivings,
I bring, blessed Saviour, to Thee!

O Lord, from my heart I do thank Thee
For all Thou hast borne in my room,
Thine agony, dying, unsolaced,
Alone in the darkness of doom,
That I, in the glory of heaven,
Forever and ever might be—
A thousand, a thousand thanksgivings,
I bring, blessed Saviour, to Thee!

The words are by Ernst C Homburg (1605-1681) and were translated from German by Mrs. Frances Bevan (1827-1909). The music is by Alfred P. Gibbs. It’s #128 in Hymns of Worship and Remembrance (the chapel “black book”).
I couldn’t find a video or even a midi file of it, so I recorded it myself, for those who are not familiar and would like to hear it.  Nothing fancy, and I post it in fear and trembling.  But I know my parents will be thrilled.