"The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
surely I have a delightful inheritance." Psalm 16:6

My Mother's Mother will always remain one of my best and warmest childhood memories. I loved her and my Granddad very much. She passed when I was 18. She had emphysema-a disease caused by years of smoking that slowly destroys your lungs. So she was sick for some of my middle childhood years and all of my teen years and I watched her atrophy...slowly. She was a dinky woman to begin with, but to see her barely weigh 85 lbs was a painful sight. What started as shortness of breath on her traveling escapades with my Granddad became a tracheotomy in her throat and breathing so labored she could barely get any calories in her body. The more her pain increased the more mine did as well. It's hard to watch a loved one suffer and not be able to do a thing. Thankful she is in a better place and I know I will see her again one day...on the other side.

When was the last time you sat and truly counted your blessings? Especially here in America, we take so much for granted. Things like running water, electricity that flows through our homes, indoor personal washing machines and a dryer to dry freshly cleansed garments. We can get from here to there in any number of mode of transportation and this includes our legs. When was the last time you thanked God for your legs? Your health? If your health is compromised it can come down to thanking him from each breath.

I'm not writing this morning to make you feel guilty for enjoying the conveniences and pleasures of life, but when we really sit and is so very true...the best gifts have value we cannot pay and priceless are they and precious to the heart. I know God has blessed my entire life. But parts of my life did not include him to any great degree. So I am in a position to compare my life with Jesus and without. With Jesus I have had more obstacles and more set backs and such. But with Jesus has been my favorite part. For with Jesus I feel and know I am purposed for something, even if it's only to be friends with my Heavenly Father. I love being friends with Him. He is my favorite. He holds my heart in the deep places nothing else can touch and I am such a heart person for me this is a truly big deal. It can't really be explained. I know most don't understand-for how can people understand something they've never experienced or relate to a path they have never travelled? We can't expect them to.

When I was in graduate school I recall my life feeling like all had fallen perfectly in the places I had desired. Everything was as I dreamed...except one thing. I had left God out of all of my planning. I pursued many things, but not Abba God. But He still knew my name. He reached in my heart and touched my soul like nothing I had ever known. I would have moments of intense emptiness in the midst of what should've been my greatest joys. Thank God for the discernment He allowed so I could figure it almost immediately out. Even when I didn't walk with him-I somehow instinctually knew His Voice.

Life with Jesus requires sacrifice. It is so much more than a chorus or being a responsible citizen or a good rule follower. It's about being in the Love with the Creator and humbly serving with His heart in mind. He gave his life for mine and I do the same. Life has felt much more complete ever since...and believe you-me...I've got some miraculous and spine thrilling stories of how He cares, protects and provides.

His love has left me breathless in the most glorious of ways. Oh Ancient of Days...gave His last breath for me.

He cares for you to. When was the last time to sat and truly asked him to increase your gratitude? Asked Him to open your eyes to how He has lavished his love on you? Now could be a good time to include him in all your plans, not just the big ones or church related ones. I think you just might like the ride. He alone is a spectacular view. ~Nicole