Friday, April 8, 2011

1,000 things to be thankful for



It all started with a darling little girl who thought my name was “Charlotte.” She gave me a new name—“Charlotte”—when I met her. When I heard that name, I thought, “I think I like that.” This little girl, having just seen the movie Charlotte’s Web, was obviously touched by it.
If you have watched the movie, you know it is about a talking spider and how she inspires and helps a little pig, Wilbur, find out who he is. She helps him step into his destiny.
When I posted this comment on my facebook page,  “A little girl just called me “Charlotte”; I think I like it,” I didn’t know what would transpire.
My friend Anne Stock from Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, had asked me to come and be the speaker at their women’s conference. I did not know that they would use this facebook comment and turn it into the title for that conference. When I got to Harrisburg for the conference, I found in my room the brochure, and it was all done in facebook form. Included in this brochure was the facebook conversation of me posting that comment. The first responder was Anne, and she had insight into what the little girl had done in giving me that name.
The name of the conference was called Charlottes Unite. It was a conference for connection women, encouraging each other in who we were.
At the end of the conference, Anne was speaking and sharing about a gal who had at one time written down 1,000 things that she was thankful for. While she spoke, she had us begin to write things down that we were thankful for. As I began to write, I could feel a good feeling coming on me and on others in the room. The very room was changing its atmosphere.
There is something about being thankful that changes everything around us. Being thankful is a very easy thing. It is a choice that we make every day and at times, every minute. It’s simple: if you want to change the air around you and change your heart, choose to be thankful.
I wrote down simple things that would come to my memory. Things like picking blackberries, making jam, watching my husband catch a fish and the look on his face when he does, watching little girls play pretend. As I began to write, I realized there is so much to be thankful for. This will not be hard, writing down a thousand things. So, when I got home, I decided I would do that.
I really like facebook and post many things on there. So I posted on my facebook that I had started writing down 1,000 things I’m thankful for. Many people responded. One gal came up with a plan. I like it when people come up with a good plan. She decided that she would do it, too, but would turn it into a 40-day thankfulness. Every day for 40 days she would write down 25 things that she was thankful for. What a great idea. I decided to join in that plan. So, I’m into my third day and am excited to see what will be put to paper today. Another day of thankfulness—can’t beat that. You should think about that, and when you do, you will start seeing in your head those things that you are thankful for. For me, they are things like seeing one of my trees bloom in spring, boys eating worms, baby chicks, the contrast between the blue sky and the green grass.
So start writing, and change your day. Let’s walk in thankfulness.
Charlottes, let’s unite and bring thankfulness wherever we go and start a chain reaction all around us.

25 comments:

  1. Yay!! This is going to be fun.

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  2. This is so good. Today there was bad news... As I drove home with tears in my eyes, I began to be intentionally thankful. My list was short because it occurred to me on my last turn but I think there were a hand-full of thanks for what did not go wrong and for knowing what we were up against. This blog is such a confirmation. 25 a day sounds possible.

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  3. What a fabulous idea! I might suggest it to my Kingdom Training Classmates on Tuesday. We have a little over 40 days of classes left! I love this post! Thank you for sharing your precious heart!

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  4. One of my favorite parts of this blog was this one: "One gal came up with a plan. I like it when people come up with a good plan."
    I am the same exact way Momma Beni!! Another reason I know why God chose you to be my momma. hehehe. Anyway, when I read that I realized I love when people around me come up with plans and then I help them with their plan--it makes me come alive---i'm not the initial idea bringer-i'm made to help...random comment. I am also thankful for this blog...another connection point with one of my hero's insight on life and how they live it. I love the internet!! i guess i'm thankful for that too! love you. Great job girl!!!!!

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  5. A conference for connection women? I've never heard of such a thing. Darla & I were talking about being connectors the last time I saw her. I love that. Also love the thankfulness fast, I might use that on a smaller scale with my kids.

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  6. Welcome to Blogland! Looking forward to you sharing.

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  7. Love it. Love you. You are real.

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  8. Thanks Beni...love this. I'm off to do my 3rd list...my second list ended at #54...because I like that number.

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  9. So amazing Beni! We've decided to do this as a church! =)

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  10. Beni, this is a great idea. I try to get up each morning with thankfulness expressed to God, but this is deeper and more lasting. I will begin today.

    I appreciate you encouraging women the way you do--well, you do everyone--but I think women especially need encouragement.

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  11. This is wonderful. I love things that keep my life focused on all the amazing things and keep me feasting on the tree of Life. Thanks Beni.

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  12. I saw your post(s) on fb about doing this & LOVED it... I've sort of been doing it in my head throughout the day but I am going to start making a list! I'm hoping this 40 Days of Thankfulness idea will go Viral! Maybe everyone will start doing it - like the 30 Day Photo Challenge that everyone jumped on! What a difference that would make if we could inspire a spirit of thankfulness to rise up! Oh wait - you do that for me all the time already! So happy you have joined Blogland! Off to start my list...
    ~Karrilee~

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  13. I am so glad you are writing a blog now! You have so mich insight, I will be a regular reader for sure.

    I'm going to start 1,000 things to be thankful for on Monday! I'm excited to see where this goes :) love ya lady!

    -Katrina

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  14. Love it, thankfulness is so important in our lives.

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  15. Love the fact that thankfulness changes the atmosphere in us and in our environment. Note to self:- be thankful in the night hours when I can't sleep.

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  16. I am thankful for this great idea! My take is this...if I do this first thing in the morning it will set a thankful tone for the entire day.
    Love it!

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  17. Great post!
    Being thankful is in direct obedience to the Holy Spirit
    Romans 8:5 NLT
    Those who are dominated by the sinful nature think about sinful things, but those who are controlled by the Holy Spirit think about things that please the Spirit.

    When I am grumpy and negative all seems to fall down around me, but if I change my attitude, (even when I don't want to), my situation changes around me.

    I am thankful I found your blog, via facebook I must add. :)

    Blessings,
    <><

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  18. Dear Beni,
    I read your idea on FB and jumped right on it. I think your creative idea is very pleasing to God. I did not realize the abundance of the benefit until I started doing it. I've found that by building my thought life on what I do have, instead of lack, I am building a solid foundation. I've asked God to help me see and realize my life blessings from His perspective. Also,I asked to have thought patterns in light of what He sees for me. Wow, has God answered my prayer! It is hard to limit my list to 25 things a day. He has filled me with joyful thankfulness. Thank you for all you are doing for so many of us! Many blessings, Elinda

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  19. I've been doing something similar to this for the last year or two, counting a minimum of five reasons to smile or five things I'm thankful for each day. It has made a huge difference in my life and has definitely changed atmospheres for me.

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  20. It IS an awesome idea! But EWWWW... boys eating worms?!!! (lol)

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  21. So good. I started doing this too after reading One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp ...which may have been what Anne at the conference was referring to. Such an amazing book...a veritable piece of art as far as writing goes and the message on a thankful heart has such an impact. Thankfulness sets the atmosphere for miracles to happen...
    Here's just a peek into her blog http://www.aholyexperience.com/2006/11/1000-gifts-awake/
    I think you'll really like her,
    ~Heather

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