Last night, a dear friend encouraged me to write more often, even if it’s just a wee thought, so that’s what I’m going to do.  I love to write, but rarely do I find the time or motivation to do so.  So, I’m going to accept her challenge and try to write once per week for a while, even if it’s just a paragraph.  My friend said these short writings could be little “Jlurbs”–like “Jo blurbs”…so here’s my first Jlurb. 😉

Today, while at lunch over at Project 658 (my fave place..seriously, click the link and see why I’m in love. It’s the best.), I met a new friend.  She is a refugee from Afghanistan, who walks from her apartment with her four children (including a 3 month old baby) to Project 658 where she is taking ESL classes and trying really hard to learn English.  Her family has lived in the States for ten months, but they were moved three times before ending up in North Carolina.  I tried to wrap my comfortable, American brain around that…moving four times in ten months, with three children, one pregnant belly, and a country where you don’t speak the language or know the culture.

I marveled at this courageous woman and asked, “Do you like it here?…In America?”  Her answer was immediate; the kind of answer you know better than you know yourself, because there could be nothing truer to you.  She replied, “Oh yes. The security is very good here.”

You guys.  I nodded.  And then I mumbled something like, “Yes, America is..very….safe.”

Can I tell you?  This dear woman’s response to my simple question has humbled me the rest of this day.  For all the times I worry about meaningless nothings.  For all the times I complain to my husband that it’s going to take us a whole year to save up to go to flipping Disney World.  For all the times I have prayed, God, can I please just have six months that are easy? Can I just have a break?

And all the while, just a few miles down the road, lives a beautiful Afghani woman, so thankful for her family’s security.  And how they are part of the lucky few who get the opportunity  to flee the madness of the only home they know, and make America their new home.  A woman who is thankful.

So today?  Today I learned a lesson on gratitude.  Today I am thankful for our security.  I am thankful to live in a country that allows others a safe haven (no matter how many faults I find in her, America is still lovely).  I am thankful that I have time to worry about nothings because I’m not worrying about the safety of my family.  I am thankful that Disney World is an attainable hope for sometime in the next few years.  And lastly, I am thankful that life is NOT easy.  Because when it’s easy and comfortable, I am robbed of the chance to grow, and to feel, and to rely on my God, who is so much grander than I could dream.



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