Flowing Over Into Lives: Joy.

flowing over into lives joy This exposition of documenting one thousand gifts, in the small, minute parts of life, I find myself probing even hunting for beauty. I discover that I am steadily praying, thanking God for the dampened, mossy trees, fog rising off big buildings, birds screeching in the distance. I discover I am asking Jesus to teach me to see His beauty in all, that my eyes might wander and behold His glory in everything.

I chose to start the early morning off at the laundromat with my two journals {my usual journal along with my gifts journal}, my bible, and a treat: a 12oz vanilla latte. As I gradually unwrapped chapter 15 of the book of Romans, my heart was being filled to the brim; it was replete with cheer. I hit verse 13 and about wept my soul straight through my eyes. The two sentences scripted into a verse shivered my bones, shaping a smile between my lips.

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Paul prayed this over the Romans and my soul leapt with a luxury unexplainable, that it was recorded for my eyes to read. "I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in Him." The understanding deepened: this joy and peace that is accompanied, escorted by gratitude, it is here because through each named gift, I am brought closer to the feet of Jesus. My soul is secured in Jesus as I trust Him; my essence is being gently hollowed out, expanding to create more space for Jesus's love and in that my trust has enhanced. As I thank Him and recognize the good gifts {in the small and minute} that He gives, I trust Him more and more, surrendering myself with acknowledgment that He cares. He cares for me and for you - why else would He surround us with beauty, encompass this world with grace and glory far and wide? And when I continuously gaze upon the goodness, I am without reason to not trust. Which accompanies peace. Delivers complete joy. And then, THEN I am "overflowing with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit." Flowing over, I will, into the lives around me; into the neighbors I share walls with, the bystander folding her clothes across the table, and the old man at the grocery store.

Still being made new, imperfect but transforming,

Natalie