A Catholic Convert in Ottawa

Finding Joy in the Little Things

Posted on: April 10, 2014

All your works shall give thanks to you, O LORD,

and all your saints shall bless you!

~Psalm 145:10*

candy bag

Treats for after the braces came off

Today was another big day for my son. Not as big as Confirmation or the start of high school, but an important day nevertheless. His braces came off today.

Those who have worn braces themselves or had a child with braces know what this means. No, I’m not talking about the need to take care of a retainer, but about the world of forbidden foods—those sticky, chewy, crunchy and hard items—that opens up again once the braces come off.

In fact, the orthodontist sent home a treat bag with my son that includes microwave popcorn, gum and various kinds of candy. And on the menu tonight? Nachos. Bagels, pretzels and nuts will most likely be requested for next week’s grocery trip. My son is very happy to be done with brackets, wires and elastics.

Sometimes we forget to appreciate these little things. Like being able to eat something from the bulk store again, walk the dog around the park now that much of the snow has melted, or hear the songs of birds in the backyard (or, in my case, the home office—our zebra finches sing when we’re in the room).

If we can’t see past the bigger blessings we’re waiting and praying for—perhaps a life-changing event such as a promotion or the birth or adoption of a child—we run the risk of missing the little blessings, where we can also see God’s work in creation and his love for us.

We can take a cue from Psalms 145 to 151, where the psalmist praises God’s care for his people, his healing and his power and calls on all of creation to join in praising the Lord. We can be thankful for the ways God blesses us and our loved ones each day.

Right now, I’m thankful that we had a good visit with my in-laws and they had a safe trip home. That my son’s braces are finally off and I can stop nagging him to use the floss threaders and reminding him what he can’t eat. That I can lace up my sneakers and get some fresh air with my happy English bulldog. And, of course, that I can process my thoughts through this blog.

I pray that we would see God’s hand in the small blessings in life as well as the big ones.

Sing to the LORD with thanksgiving;

make melody to our God upon the lyre!

He covers the heavens with clouds,

he prepares rain for the earth,

he makes grass grow upon the hills.

~ Psalm 147:7-8

(*Scripture quotes taken from the Holy Bible, Revised Standard Version, Second Catholic Edition.)

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Food for Thought

(Y)ou do not know about tomorrow. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and we shall do this or that.” ~ James 4:14-15

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