Wednesday, February 23, 2011

One Thousand Gifts - Chapter 6

The vlog for Chapter 6 (What Do You Want? The Place of Seeing God) of Ann Voskamp's One Thousand Gifts is now online.  Wow, where do I begin?  The words Ann penned for this chapter seem to be meant for me... like God talking to me.

Let me start here... these words on page 104 caught my eye:
But this is the woman I am becoming.  That eucharisteo is making me - fulfilling thanks vows to God. I am starved and the feast makes me wild.
Over these past few months, I have become that woman too!  It wasn't until I started counting gifts that I realized how starved for God I was... starved to see Him in everything... and realizing that I can not fully live, wildly live, until I see Him in all things.

On page 108, Ann's words brought me back to the time that led me to start my 1,000 gifts list.  It was also summertime, the summer of 2010, a time when my heart was sore and when I so desperately wanted to see and feel joy.  Here are her words:
A summer of pain. Always the running. A summer of grace.  Always the revelation.  Pain is everywhere, and wherever the pain there can be everywhere grace, and yes, Jesus, I am struggling and I get turned around but I think I know, at least in part, what I want.  If I had never run, if I had never fallen, and here, I am not sure I would have known with blazing clarity.  I may not know all that it means, but this is what I want.

This kingdom laden with glory, this, the pearl of great price, the field I'd sell everything to possess.  This is the pearl that crams me with a happiness that throbs, serrated edge, pit open wide for more of His glory.

The only place we have to come before we die is the place of seeing God.

This is what I'm famished for: more of the God-glory.

I whisper with the blind beggar, "Lord, I want to see" (Luke 18:41).

That's my moaning pulse: "See. See."
Beauty from ashes... with the ashes from this past summer, I have been able to see beauty.  To see... Beauty!  To see that God wanted our family to unwrap more of His love, to unwrap beauty, for the last, the least, the forgotten, and the forsaken.

Here are more of Ann's words... you'll see why this chapter is so meaningful to me:
I want to see beauty.

Beauty is all that is glory and God is Beauty embodied, glory manifested.  This is what I crave: I hunger for Beauty.

Because that is what I am made for - to give Him more glory.  More eucharisteo, more.  And not only yesterday.  But today - manna today or I starve.

... omnipresent God is Beauty who demands worship, passion, and the sacrifice of a life, for He owns it.

... faith is always a way of seeing, a seeking for God in everything.  And if the eyes gaze long enough to see God lifted in a thing, how can the lips not offer eucharisteo? The truly saved have eyes of faith and lips of thanks.  Faith is in the gaze of a soul.
I now realize that I've actually been counting gifts way before I typed gift #1 on this keyboard, I just called them by a different name --- I called them beauty from ashes moments.  Here are some more of Ann's words...
The art of deep seeing makes gratitude possible.  And it is the art of gratitude that makes joy possible.  Isn't joy the art of God?

Don't I give God most glory when I am fully alive?  And I am most fully alive beholding God!

Longing to gaze upon the Beauty of the Lord and to seek Him, the place where all the joy spills from.

Praying with eyes wide open is the only way to pray without ceasing.
So today I pray with eyes wide open, beholding beauty because He is Beauty!  With a grateful heart for...

#351 - #360
~ Chapter 6 of One Thousand Gifts.
~ The season of pain and disappointment, the summer of 2010.
~ All the beauty-from-ashes moments that resulted.
~ Starting my 1,000 gifts list.
~ The waiting and the anticipation.
~ Spiritual growth and more maturing.
~ The woman I am becoming... wildly living eucharisteo.
~ Eyes to see beauty because of The One who is truly Beautiful.
~ Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow...
~ Great things He has done and will do!

Unwrapping more of His love in this world.
Act justly.  Love mercy.  Walk humbly with God! 


  1. Love your post today... I too am reading the book 1000 gifts... I love that you call these gifts "beauty from ashes". I do also. I love what you say here: "So today I pray with eyes wide open, beholding beauty because He is Beauty! With a grateful heart for..."

    He is beauty.... I love that.

    Feel free to visit my blog anytime.

  2. Thank you for leaving a comment today, Angelina!

    I love your blog's theme... how God can take away weights from our life and heart, setting us free!