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These ‘Buts of Life.’

No, I didn’t mean to type ‘butts,’ just in case you are wondering. In the most sincere part of your heart, do you ever feel that there are times you are simply not grateful enough? Yes, you may be going through the motions of expressing gratitude and all that, yet some part of you seems to be begrudging because of some ‘buts.’

These silent ‘buts’ that we store in our hearts and hold them secretly as a yardstick to measure how much gratitude is worth expressing;No Ifs, No Buts, Happiness Looks Good On You, Gratitude

“But my dreams are yet to come true,”
“But I’m still broke and don’t know when my slim purse will have wads of cash in it.”
“But I’m fat (well that’s mostly your fault if I may say so).”
“But, if only I lived in a better house, drove a better car, have all that I want…
“But I’m doing all the right things yet nothing is going as right as it should.”

The line of buts can become endless if we keep searching. They might seem harmless, but the truth is that these ‘buts and ifs’ are a barrier to our happiness and success. They block us from simply letting go and losing ourselves in the joy of living itself because we are putting conditions on potential good actions in our lives. By our buts, we train our minds to accept virtual happiness and peace of mind only when certain conditions have been fulfilled.

All these ‘buts’ are crying out loud that we don’t have enough, that we are not happy, that we are not at peace and we will only be if…

To turn things around we have to relearn and reprogram our mindset. Count your buts one by one and contrast them with your blessings – even the most mundane of blessings.

Learning to give thanks with a grateful heart can be a tough lesson. There are days that I have truly struggled, but (well this is a good but) I’ve also learnt that by constantly keeping my affirmatives closer to heart, my number of buts are losing ground and it’s a practice worth keeping.

Gratitude, Thanks, I'm grateful

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The Time To Write…

All about books, Library, Reading

It doesn’t take much to please me. I’m a cheap thrill kinda girl. One of the simple things I enjoy in life is to sit in a quiet corner of a library and indulge in a book or just to write to my heart’s content but lately, such indulgence has whittled down to such a minutiae degree due to life and its responsibilities getting in the way.

Nonetheless, I have to create the space to satisfy these cravings of mine and I must find the time to write even if I have to steal it from somewhere ‘cos I observed that any week I failed to visit the library at least once, a part of me knows abject discontent. It took me a while to recognize and understand this – during one of my self-help sessions.

For me, this simple act of finding time to write or to immerse myself in a book is a form of therapy on a different level and over the years, wherever I’ve lived, one of the first thing that I do without fail is to locate the bookstore, the nearest library and then the grocery stores.

So, as I sit in this library surrounded by books, the only sound I can hear is the squeaky wheels of the trolley as a librarian shelves the books, I feel a lift in my spirit and can almost feel the trickle of dopamine sending happiness signals into every part of me. My heart knows such contentment. I sip my chai latte and grasp the momentary pleasure with both hands of gratitude.

I’m currently reading Two by Two by Nicholas Sparks.

Christmas Nostalgia – Have a Merry One My Lovelies.

Image result for christmas gifs

I don’t know why but in the midst of present Christmas celebrations – low-key in the UAE – I suffer from deep pangs of nostalgia for Christmas’s of my childhood. I relive them with heartfelt gratitude to my parents who always made each Christmas special.

I hope you have a wonderful time of the year with your loved ones.

I am sharing an old Christmas post of mine. It’s Christmas made in Nigeria.

Jacqueline

This Joyful Morning…

Walking, Meditating, Thinking, Reconnecting, Praise The Lord, Rejuvenating, Nature, Walk, In Spirit, Thankful

I walk with the gentle wind touching my skin, its crispness a delightful contrast to the heated breeze of weeks past,

with my face turned to the sun that glitters off the face of the waters like a thousand stars, I stare at the simpleness, the glorious beauty of everything.

The birds chirp away, cars zoom past mere meters away along the highway, and they seem to be in a different time zone,

the man with his clinking bicycle rides past whistling in tandem to the music in his mind and a barefoot man hurries past me, earthing himself and getting feet tanned, I chuckle to myself, it’s all good.

Full breaths of the briny fishy sea air I take in, my soul is grateful.
my low medidative instrumental shuffles on, no words yet the chords reach deep inside and curl themselves around my bones; they are soul food for a torn spirit; it gives me healing.

Help me to be a vessel of your peace Lord. Though my humanness gets in the way most times and makes me a poor example of your peace, those moments that I have inhaled and held your peace, I can’t even begin to explain the exquisite state that it leaves my senses – filled with the vibes that everything is going to be alright and yes, to the heart that believes, everything will be alright.

Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.

Well of Warmth – grateful musings

I know that life hasn’t been all sunshine and flowers for everyone – though some lucky folks got to see the Eclipse – not with all the ugly news filtering in from all around the world and when one listens to all these heavy news, it’s easy to get sucked under.

It’s easy to get depressed and to lose sight of the rays of the sun above the dark clouds. It’s easy to forget to remain in a state of thankfulness and to focus on the negativity. As if life is not tough enough already these days we wake up expecting another shoe to fall off, another dam to burst, another bomb explosion, another mad human mowing others down with a car, another Twitter outrage etc that we have almost become mentally conditioned to bad news that overshadows everything.Gratitude, Thankfulness

For me not to get immured in these negative things, I make a conscious effort to appreciate my little blessings wherever I find them. I focus on mindfulness and steer my brain away from the path of distress that it tends to venture to, to the path of wholesomeness. I also find that paying extra attention in showing kindness to others creates an emotional well of warmth – check this post on HuffPost.

As the week winds down, I am grateful for fruitful and grace-filled days. Though what I call my blessings may look insignificant in human eyes’, it’s wonderful to be alive and well. That is a priceless blessing. I hope you’ve got something to be thankful for?

Gratitude is my tonic. Jacqueline

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Divine Provision

Gratitude, Quote, Divine Provision, Blessings, Favour

The past few months have been challenging in more ways than one for me, more so financially that these days I am truly learning what it means to live by faith and obtaining Divine Provision.

I am often reminded of Matthew 6:26  and 27:

Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much better than they?

Who out of you by worrying can add a single hour to his lifespan?…

Learning to keep my eyes on the positive things and to leave worry that adds nothing extra but its own anxiety to my life is a journey that I undertake every day. Some days I can’t help but ask ‘Lord, I don’t understand why you are taking me through this route and what lessons I  am supposed to learn here? Anyway, since you want me to pass through this bumpy side, I guess you have your sandals on to keep me company while I find that way that you’ve designed for me and if I fall, I am trusting you to catch me.’

I share my innermost thoughts to encourage anyone who might be going through rough times.

There are certainly dark days when you wonder what comes next. There are certainly trials that would leave you numb and at loss for words, that all you want to do is to withdraw into your shell and wait out the storm. But, I say to you, it is in these moments that you should hold on to the promises of God.

It is in these moments that you should count your blessings even if you need a microscope to search and find one. It is in these moments that your gratitude must be amplified because the Lord inhabits the praise of His people and silent gratitude is heard by no one. You can interrupt that anxiety with gratitude.

Blessed be.

Jacqueline

If you wish to participate in a gratitude challenge, there are several gratitude/thankful platforms in the blogosphere that you can tune into and get your ithankful going on. I can’t express in words the enormity of Joy and fulfillment that comes from having a heart of gratitude. Please check out Maria’s blog, Colline’s blog and Bernadette’s for thankful/gratitude challenges.

 

Handfuls of Spring…Thankful reflections

Painting, Art, Spring, Beautiful Colours

Spring follows Winter seamlessly as it has done over the ages and time passes by so quickly, sometimes in a blur that we tend to take the itty-bitty parts of our lives for granted.

In Spring the heat of the sun gathers in momentum over here, that by Summer time it’s literally steaming and baking at such a degree that the heat wallops you in the face and every hidden part that it can get. I consider myself a child of the Sun, I love warmth, but not the unbelievable scorching sun of the Middle East that makes you feel as if you are dough brought out to rise and bake in the torrid desert heat.

As I drive around pursuing the days business, I see dots of umbrella’s waving down the streets sheltering the heads of their owners and I know untold pleasure and gratitude over having the comfort of my car and the air conditioner that keeps me from perspiring and swimming in my own sweat.

 I am thankful for the gift of being their mother as I listen to my children chatter and squabble over what radio channel to listen to as we drive home from school and I wonder how we take such comfort for granted.

Sometimes, my heart knows untold joy for things that I can’t explain and I wish I could freeze frame those moments so that I may look at the beautiful, divine colours that these moments make.

Spring is such a beautiful season, so does every other season that we are given hold its own beauty. We are only given a handful of Springs in our lifetime and one thought that stays with me as I write this is, may we thankfully plant in the Spring of opportunity of our lives so that we do have a great harvest in the Fall.

Peace be with you. What are you grateful for today?

Jacqueline

If you wish to participate in a gratitude challenge, there are several gratitude/thankful platforms in the blogosphere that you can tune into and get your ithankful going on. I can’t express in words the enormity of Joy and fulfillment that comes from having a heart of gratitude. Please check out Maria’s blog, Colline’s blog and Bernadette’s for thankful/gratitude challenges.