Nike, at Choose to Thrive describes her realization that thriving is a choice to live deliberately with thankfulness, gratitude, and appreciation no matter what financial, social, or emotional situation you find yourself in. She says, in part,
I think Hubs and I figured we’d enjoy the upstairs and yard, put up with the downstairs and be happily onto one of those shiny new houses across the street in a few years… part of me has given up trying to make this house feel like a home…the other, more important part is that I've realized that I’ve been playing the wo-is-me-card way too often and using the excuse that we can’t afford to remodel anything the way we’d like so why bother to put my heart into this place… If these walls could talk, they’d tell our story… And for that reason, I love this house. I am so grateful for this house. And this house deserves better… I want these walls to say that we loved this place for everything it was … that we poured our heart and soul into making it the very best home it could be … that we faced the trials and sorrow of our life as a family, gathered together safely under this roof.
I think she’s right. I think she’s so right, that I am adapting her pledge to be mine, and I invite you to do the same.
I acknowledge that I have not cared for, have not cherished my house as a blessing from God. I am ashamed to admit I have allowed outside concerns, that I have allowed kid destruction and time to tire me out, to sap my enthusiasm for having a home that is welcoming and reflects my love of family, my faith in God, and my place as part of a community of believers.
It is too easy to see what I hate about my house – I need new flooring, I want to make changes to every room, I don’t have enough storage, I don’t have enough room to entertain – but choosing to thrive means I will notice instead the love that has lived within these walls.
I will remember bright-eyed foster children that God allowed me to love.
I will remember bringing home a beautiful boy who was a true miracle.
I will remember becoming more than just two people joined together in this house. I will remember becoming a family, stronger together than the sum of our parts, eternal in our devotion to the King.
I will remember the struggles of joblessness, the challenges of juggling college and homeschool and work and housework and ill health.
I will remember God’s promise to be with me always.
I will look at my home with new eyes.
I will see the beauty and blessing in the rooms I have, instead of wishing for, and dreaming of larger rooms in a different house.
I will stop putting off for “one day” the things that I can do now, and I will focus on what is possible and not what I believe is impossible.
I will teach my son what stewardship really means, showing him by example how to show gratitude to God for His gifts.
I will seek to the best of my ability to treat every part of my life as a precious gift from God by caring for it, loving it, and nurturing it – even the things that cause me pain or heartache, because pain and heartache lead to growth and understanding.
I say to God and myself today that I will create a home that reflects not who I am today, but who I aim to be as a sanctified, holy, perfect Child of God.
I will not give up even though I am sorely tested.
I will thrive…here, where I am now, with what I’ve been given.