A Christmas Countdown Activity: Counting Your Blessings

Because of our season of having a new baby, we tried to minimize our activities this usually-busy month of December. I have had to choose which activities and parties to say yes to, and for the first time since we got married, so far I have scheduled only two parties that I have to host here at home. (The past Christmases, we always hosted at least five parties, and that is a conservative estimate!)

Last Sunday, I had my Victory group over for our annual Christmas get-together. I realized I really missed them! This was our first time to all get together again since giving birth. Anyway, one of our activities (aside from the usual food fest and white elephant gift exchanges) was ornament-making.

Because not all of us were the artistic DIY-type, we had to go for something simple, something doable for everyone. We decided to just write down the top things we are thankful for the year on one side, and the top things we are believing God for on the other side. It’s amusing how some of us were still initially intimidated by the space we had to fill, yet when we started jotting down our lists, it became so easy to run out of space. It was a reminder that there will always be a lot to be grateful for, no matter how “difficult” or challenging the year might have been for some.

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Here’s a super-summarized list of things I am grateful for this 2015:

  • Celebrating our tenth year as husband and wife– it’s been a decade and in God’s faithfulness and because of His grace, each year just keeps getting better!
  • Enjoying nine months of rest (albeit mandatory because of pregnancy-related reasons)
  • Enjoying my shortest labor and giving birth to our fourth baby Liam
  • Alyanna finding a potential gift in the area of sports (well at the very least– she’s very, very interested in it and she finds great joy in it!)
  • Mika finally overcoming her fear of the water and finally dipping her head in the pool…and finally starting to learn to swim
  • Building deeper friendships with other moms and couples…and the kids building deeper friendships and developing new ones with other kids
  • Isaiah being protected and still in good health in spite of all the accidents
  • The kids being in good health year-round– no one got sick even though they had interactions with some kids who were sick week in and week out
  • My victory group going beyond meetings to deeper friendships
  • Our book being published!

…oops, I said super-summarized! I’ll stop there.

And as for the things I am believing God for in the coming year, I still have a very raw list, as I am still going to discuss and work on it with the family in time for next year’s prayer and fasting. One thing I already know that is a priority for next year is DISCIPLINE (this is a FAITH goal because this is impossible apart from God’s help!). I want our family to honor God by being more disciplined. Here are the areas I want us to be stretched in:

  • FAITH – grow deeper in our walk with God and love for the Word, memorize more scripture, in-depth study of books of the Bible
  • SERVICE- make chores a regular part of their schedules, find an organization/ministry to volunteer in and COMMIT to
  • HEALTH- practice more mindful eating habits, drink more water, sleep earlier, drink vitamins regularly (I’m supposed to take my supplements CONSISTENTLY– calcium, malunggay, omega-3, vitamin D; and the kids– Propan TLC, bee propolis, malunggay…everyday!)

Side note: In spite our effort to minimize, our calendar only has one day that has no scheduled activity/party. I guess the practice of discipline especially in the area of HEALTH shouldn’t wait until next year. Because the sleeping early and eating healthy part won’t be a realistic goal for now, let’s start with the consistent taking of vitamins. I’ve been making sure the kids take their Propan TLC daily, and me– well, I’m about to start taking malunggay capsules again…to somehow help ensure that no one gets sick this season as much as possible.

 

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You might want to do this activity with your family, too. It’s a good way of keeping tab of God’s blessings and faithfulness throughout the year, as well as setting up an atmosphere of faith and expectation for the coming year. The more specific, the better, of course! 🙂

What things are you thankful for this year?

What are you believing God for this coming 2016? 

 

 

 

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