SOUL SOAKING

Gratitude… a word too easily flung about…. but just as easily forgotten….
We complain… we let the dark clouds of life engulf us, we lose focus and perspective…
Sometimes, we need to open our eyes to the world around us to in order to get clarity, to get direction, to realize blessing, to remember gratitude….
We are spending some family time in our favourite spot… Too, Mozambique. The air hangs thick with richness and authenticity, with genuineness, with real life….
Amongst this beauty in simplicity and the beaming smiles of this cheerful nation, my soul has been struck yet again with the reminder to be grateful….
Whilst watching the daily evening beach soccer match from the veranda of our little ‘casa’ two days ago, a man, a young man, hobbled across the sand on two worn wooden crutches. Grotesquely disfigured, birth deformity- his left leg twisted into an immovable horizontal position, just above the knee joint and positioned at the back of his right leg. Horrifically wrenched out of natural proportions…This didn’t impede the speed and determination with which he manoeuvered himself to get across the beach or the enthusiastic manner in which he performed this task…
A deep breath… and a moment of quiet…. a drenching of gratitude…..
A few mornings ago, as we drove along the narrow tar road leading out of Tofo, masses of blue-uniformed school children trundled alongside the road. Among them, a little boy carefully clutched a prize possession… the ball from the top of a roll-on deodorant…. his ball…
In a moment of trepidation, it slipped out of his grasp and bounced onto the asphalt in front of oncoming vehicles… his face suddenly swept with panic… he risked losing his roll-on ball, very likely his only ball, to the heavy weight of a stream of approaching 4×4’s….
Thankfully and miraculously, catastrophe was avoided and the somewhat terror-stricken child was able to retrieve his small white plastic ball from the road without it being flattened….
A roll on ball… his only ball…. possibly his only toy….
A deep breath…. a moment of quiet washing through me…. a drenching of gratitude….
Late this afternoon, whilst driving along a windy sand track, lined with coconut palms, we turned a corner to see an old man, lying motionless in the center of the track. I wondered what on earth he was doing in the middle of the road… Perhaps he was intoxicated?…
As our vehicle neared him, he reached out and grabbed two short sticks, pulling himself towards the edge of the track. We passed him, and he greeted us from his earthbound position in the sand, his face bearing a warm, embracing smile. It was then that I noticed the worn bandages on his knees, and realised that he was a cripple. These strappings were a permanent addition to protect his knee joints from being grazed as he slid himself along the ground. No wheelchair, two short sticks, worn knee ‘guards’ and a beaming cheerful face…
An invisible tear…a deep breath…a quiet recognition washing through my soul…a drenching of gratitude…
Be thankful… be grateful… teach your children to observe the world through lenses of gratitude…
Amidst all the imperfections and annoyances of our daily lives… What a gift to give our children….a deep breath, a soul soaking, a quiet moment, a recognition of thankfulness, a drenching…of all things good…
May you teach your children thankfulness… May their lives be blessed with the rich inheritance of finding daily moments of gratitude…

With motherly love
Naomi ❤️

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