About 4 chapters into Ann Voskamp’s book, One Thousand Gifts I started naming gifts. At first only in my head. It didn’t take long for me to get a small journal and start writing them. The concept of giving thanks for the small, normally overlooked things filled me with excitement. But…not wanting to go off on a tangent I told God, if this book is more than a creative prompt, more than gorgeous writing, more than a glimpse into a beautiful heart…it’s gonna have to pass the test of The Husband.
*****The book seems to be marketed to women and women are blowing up blog-land with stories about taking the gratitude-dare. But if it’s a Biblical principal men will see it…won’t they? So with fear and trepidation I asked The Husband if he’d read it and tell me what he thinks…
Give me two seconds to explain something about The Husband…you know how some men love literature, story and words? The Husband’s not one of them. He reads maybe 4 or 5 books a year. (last year’s list was Plan B, Crazy Love, Just Do It, Don’t Waste Your Life) All of those are books that challenge…make you think. He doesn’t read books for story or just because the writing is poetry. But what the man does read is the Bible. For awhile now, he’s read the Bible cover to cover (at least) two times a year, and because of that, I completely respect his view on Biblical principals.
He finished the book last week. Early this morning we were talking over coffee, I had just published the post about the Alopecia diagnosis (HERE).
“Eucharisteo is helping me not to spiral” I told him, “there’s something monumental about naming the moments…naming the gifts.”
“It’s like Adam in Genesis naming the animals.” He said.
My brow wrinkled…”no, it’s not like that…I see Adam with a steno pad looking at a thousand year project. Overwhelmed and frustrated.”
He smiled. “Well, you would see it like that.” Then he opened the Bible in his lap to Genesis 2:19- “Now the LORD God had formed out of the ground all the wild animals and all the birds in the sky. He brought them to the man to see what he would name them”…
“I’ve wondered why it says: ‘God brought them to Adam to see what he would name them’, maybe after God created the animals he wanted to share them with Adam. Think of it, ” The Husband’s eyes were lighting up, “Adam had never seen an animal of any kind! He must have been overcome with awe seeing all those animals…overcome with God’s creation.”
I interrupt, feeling like I would burst because I’m thinking maybe he gets it…”And in naming them, Adam was thanking God for the wonder of that animal…the wonder of His creation.”
We laughed as we talked about how Adam must have felt seeing an elephant for the first time…or a zebra!
God created. God gave . Adam saw. Adam named…and since God ‘wanted to see what Adam would name them’, I assume naming the gifts blessed God.
“God keeps giving and we don’t stop to name the gifts because we hardly notice” I sighed.
The Husband, shaking his head seemed to be agreeing with me…“Like a spoiled kid on Christmas morning tearing through one present after another, and then finishing with ‘why didn’t I get… ”
I interrupt him again, “Why didn’t I get the big house? The new cars? The big salary?”
“If we don’t notice and name the small things, we’re nothing more than spoiled children” he finished.
So, I just wanted to tell you… One Thousand Gifts has passed The Husband test and I’m still naming my gifts.