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It's a beautiful morning. The thermometer on the screened porch still shows the temperature to be 68 degrees. I'm snuggled in my rocking chair with a caramel macchiato. The lake in the back yard is calm, so you can see every little ripple move across. The birds are singing in what sounds like a huge chorus, and they fly back and forth from tree to tree - occasionally make a stop by the bird feeder for some of the seed that has been put out just for them. This is one of my happiest places of my day. The time when I can think about what I need to get accomplished through my day, where I can get lost in my thoughts (and sometimes my dreams), and definitely a place where I am relaxed with not a care in the world. Well...maybe the last part of that sentence isn't completely the way it is all the time from this rocking chair, but I do have to say things can often look better from here.
For years I have wanted to move from this house. There are many reasons behind that desire, from simply wanting to be closer to Charlotte, where I spend most of my time...to wanting to sometimes escape some of the sad memories that may linger in this house. But then I come out here on one of these perfect mornings, I sit in my rocking chair and listen to these birds singing. I see the peaceful ripple across the lake and I feel blessed. It is then that I let myself reflect on the good things in this house. The woman I was when I moved into this house almost 11 years ago who has grown into an even stronger, more confident, compassionate and wiser woman. Where the bad memories may have left scars on my heart, when looked upon they also show a growth spurt in my character. And it's these times that I realize I don't want to run from the bad memories any more than I want to live in the midst of them... but I do want to cherish them and be thankful for what they have provided me. Psalm 136:1 says "give thanks to the Lord for HE is good and HIS faithfulness endures forever," and that surely is what I see when I look back...God's faithfulness. I've never sat in this rocking chair that I have had to feel alone. And I have no good or bad memories in which God wasn't right there with me...seeing me through.
This morning as I sit here, with my latte dwindling, the birds singing louder than ever, and off in the distance I hear someone mowing their grass, I think "Why in the world would I ever want to leave this house?" I have grown so much here - there are so many memories of that throughout! Every house has things that you would want to change, and this one is no different... but so much of this house reflects of me already. And now the drive to Charlotte just doesn't seem so long. Philippians 4:12 says, "I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want." I find myself embracing contentment with where I am in my life...even in this house. In fact, I feel very thankful.