Today I’m thankful for the stages of life that my children are all going through. I love watching them learn and grow and become their own little persons. I’m thankful that with each soul born into our family, my heart has not grown more cluttered, just more full. Today I struggled with the noise level of my day. Yet I’ve been reminded that even though my life is never quiet, my heart is at peace. I wonder what it would be like to have neatly lined-up shoes in front of the door, and two loads of laundry a week. I wonder what it would be like if my counter-tops were always spotless and my bathroom sink never had toothpaste smeared all over it. Would that truly make me happy? No, I realize that picking up the zillionth shoe is a privilege, honor, and gift from God. I realize that the random shirt stuffed under the sofa, the mysterious smell coming from the bathroom, the gum stuck to the floor, the empty fridge yet again, are all marks of tremendous blessings. I have five little bodies that stumble down for a hug each morning. I have been given five hearts to love and tell about Jesus, the lover of their souls. Forgive me, Lord, when I cringe at the messes instead of embracing the mess-makers. Forgive me for blocking out my ears to their voices instead of joining in the clamor. Forgive my ungrateful heart and create in me a clean heart, O God, ready to hug, listen, and love. I truly am thankful.