Three out of the last four weeks we've had the fun of grandparents staying with us. Now there are just eight of us, and it seems quiet. Today felt like a lazy, summer day at home with my kids. We even bought a new slip-n-slide with a shark on it. I'm not sure what to think about the shark obsession, but it gave me some time to read. Summer season helps me take a little time to work on some areas in life like my laundry room, toys and closets, strategies at home, and spiritual reflection. My reading today was Taming Your Family Zoo, and it gave some helpful reminders for "my zoo". One phrase that I came back too was, "The trick to parenting is to stay one step ahead of your child." The author gave some great steps on being proactive in parenting, and I was reminded how taking a proactive approach spiritually is beneficial also.

David's words in Psalm 9 say, "I will thank you, Lord, with all my heart; I will tell of all the marvelous things you have done. I will be filled with joy because of you, I will sing praises to your name, O Most High." Honoring words of praise to God help me stop and think how I need to thank the Lord. One of the ways I can be proactive spiritual is to begin my day being thankful to God. Writing it down helps me because then I can go back and see my blessings and what God is doing in my life. Praising God before embarking on the day gives me a positive, thankful mind-set so when the ecosystem of fish and snails ends up spilled on the carpet I can still end the day with a smile. Some days I wish the only bad news was smelly fish on my carpet because life has days that are frustrating and sad. So be proactive and start the day thanking God for five blessing each morning for the next five days. Does it help?

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