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One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp.
My 16-year-old daughter chose this as her all-time favorite book. It's unlike any book I've ever read. Before reading it, I had heard that you'll either love it...or hate it. Well, I LOVED it. The book is written in a unique prose style - very poetic, yet not poetry. The imagery evoked by Ann's words, the way she strings the words together, is absolutely unforgettable. I found myself repeating certain phrases over and over, not just because the thoughts were breathtaking, but because the way she phrased the thought was also breathtaking.
This is a very contemplative book. It teaches you to think about all the mundane moments of your life (as a homeschool mom) and see the hand of God actively at work in those moments: a rainbow captured in a soap bubble, the little-boy smell of a child just come in from playing in the sunshine. As we learn to rejoice in each of these small gifts, it brings such glory to God! Finding joy in Him, His presence, His gifts right where we are, in the moment.
Just like you, Ann Voskamp hungers to live her one life well. Forget the bucket lists that have us escaping our everyday lives for exotic experiences. 'How, ' Ann wondered, 'do we find joy in the midst of deadlines, debt, drama, and daily duties? What does a life of gratitude look like when your days are gritty, long, and sometimes dark? What is God providing here and now?' In One Thousand Gifts, Ann invites you to embrace everyday blessings and embark on the transformative spiritual discipline of chronicling God's gifts. As Ann discovered, when we give thanks, we find ourselves wildly loved by God. In expressing gratitude for the life we already have, we discover the life we've always wanted---a life we can take, give thanks for, and break for others. Let Ann's beautiful, heart-aching stories of the everyday give you a way of seeing that opens your eyes to thanksgiving, a way of being present to God that makes you deeply happy, and a way of living so you are not afraid to die. Come feast at the table of joy.
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