Day 241

Over the last 240 days my wife Sarah has been on a quest of thankfulness.  During this time she has written entire blogs devoted to the people in her life she loves the most on their birthdays, as a proud recipient of one of these birthday blogs I felt it was only fitting to return the favor to her, as she is celebrating her 28th birthday today.

So, today’s 10kreasons blog is being written by me, her husband Josh.

Proverbs 18:22 He who finds a wife finds a good thing, And obtains favor from the LORD.

When I was 16 years old my mom and dad sat me down one day and started a conversation with me about my future wife.  They talked to me about the power of prayer and how it can shape and define our future. They then explained to me that they thought it would be a good idea for me to start praying for the girl I would someday marry.

It was one of the most intimate moments I remember having with my mom and dad growing up. I think it’s probably because we were beginning to lay some of the groundwork in my spiritual life for the most intimate relationship I would ever walk in in the natural, on this side of heaven.  As we formulated the prayer plan I of course wanted to pray she would be pretty, skinny and fun, but my parents helped point me to some of the deeper needs of marriage that the typical 16 year often overlooks.

When we were finished I was left with a 3×5 card of dreams… my dream girl.  Everyday on my way to school in my black Acura Integra, I would faithfully pull out that 3×5 card, I would go to God, and make my request for a wife known.  I would pray for a beautiful girl inside and out who would love God, love me and be the perfect partner opposite me in marriage and raising a family. I would pray that God would grow her each day, mentally and spiritually… in wisdom, stature and in favor with both God and man. I would ask God to protect and watch over her, that no evil would befall her or come near her.  I would pray that she would be a faithful friend  in life for me and that we would sharpen each other daily as iron sharpens iron.

I remember praying these prayers and some days getting such an amazing sense that was I was doing really mattered… that it was important and special, and that’s because it was!  The only way that I can explain away being able to have landed a girl of Sarah’s caliber is through the power of prayer.

When I first met Sarah my initial attraction to her was purely physical… if you’ve seen her you know what I mean. She is simply stunning! But as I got to know her I discovered she was more than just pretty-  she was smart and she had a really clever sense of humor.  She had great style.  She had an opinion on stuff and could hold her own in a conversation where opinions were being expressed. She wasn’t afraid to challenge my opinion on stuff and she did it well.  She made me feel special and I just wanted to be around her.  As the Billy Joel song goes, “she’s got a way about her”.

Once we started dating I was so proud of her.  I used to be very arrogant and for whatever reason I pretty much felt like God’s gift to the world… and yet this girl made me feel like people were looking at us and thinking “how did he get her?” In fact, I’m sure they were, and still are.

“How did he get her?”

I’ll tell ya… God answers prayer!

The Bible says in Ephesians 3:20 That God is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.  I don’t know about you, but when I’m doing something to bless the people I love the most I like blessing them beyond what they ask for.  I like to give them what they want but then more. Why? Because I love them! And I want to exceed their expectations!  God is no different with us. He loves us and takes pleasure in exceeding our expectations.  And that’s what he did for me with Sarah, God provided me with an exceedingly, abundantly, above all I could ask or think best friend!  I’m so glad my parents helped me come up with a prayer plan for a wife because it established in me a level of faith that empowered God to go beyond.

So, little miss… today I say “thank you!”  Thank you, Sarah Beth Newsom for becoming Sarah Beth Blount!

I loved the idea of you, the dream version of you that I had on that 3×5 card as a 16 year old, but the real version of you has far surpassed all of those dreams.

Words will never be enough. “You know,” you are my prize! I love you!

Josh’s List:

  1. The power of prayer.
  2. My mom and dad heard from God and shared the plan for me to start praying for Sarah.
  3. My parents prayed for her too!
  4. That Sarah has her own opinion and can stand by it.
  5. The way she can make you feel like the most special person in the world.
  6. Her life challenges me to want to be better man, husband, and father.
  7. The deep wisdom she has and is able to pull out of the Bible. Blows me away what she comes up with. Her mind and way of looking at things is amazing.
  8. She likes to buck the trends with me.
  9. She’s little, 5’4″. I’m 6’1″. We fit together nicely, plus she makes me feel big.
  10. Her smell.
  11. She has a good arm and a heck of a throwing motion. I’m not joking, you would be surprised, girl can pop the glove!
  12. She has a clever sense of humor and when she laughs, I laugh.
  13. Connections. We have had them our entire life together… thinking the same thing and saying it at the same time.
  14. We have the same taste in movies. I never have to watch lame chick flicks and she never has to watch lame action movies. If the story and performances are good, we’re in!
  15. Hazel eyes. They are rare and she’s got em.
  16. She had an amazing ability to keep up with everything. Me and Gus are constantly looking for stuff around the house and somehow she always knows where it is.
  17. She gave me Gus & Beau.
  18. When we lost our son Felix last year, she took that grief and turned it into this blog. So many people have been blessed and the devil has and will continue to pay for messing with our family.
  19. Early in our marriage God told her to stay with me so she stayed. I had let her down big time and she really had no reason to stay but she stayed.  She’s a fighter.
  20. She makes birthdays, Christmas’, any special event even more special.
  21. She likes good food like me.
  22. She loves our children and lives a life of sacrifice for them everyday.
  23. She loves Jesus! Nothing about her walk with God is about going through the motions. She has a real relationship with Jesus.
  24. Sarah’s mom and dad decided to have more kids, her mom had to have her tubes untied, she did and it worked.
  25. She’s created a home that I love to race home to.
  26. She can wear no makeup and still look great… Seriously, she doesn’t have one of those scary no make up woman faces.
  27. She will still practice some of her old Union High School cheerleading moves from time to time… Normally it means she’s really happy.

I could go on and on but I’ll stop so this doesn’t get too long.

I want to encourage you, the 10kreasons blog reader… if you have been blessed by this blog or by knowing Sarah, take the time to let her know today. Let’s be thankful for the girl who’s helped us look at thankfulness in a different way!

Sarah’s List:

  1. April 4, 1985 I took my very first breath.
  2. I have lived a very happy, very healthy, very blessed 28 years!
  3. St. Francis.  The pink hospital I was born in and the hospital I gave birth to my first born in 23 years later.
  4. My mom had her tubes untied to have me.
  5. Josh told me earlier this week that he was writing the blog for my birthday… what a wonderful gift!
  6. I had to edit his list… it had close to 50 thank you’s on it!
  7. Josh has always been a thoughtful gift giver.
  8. Josh prayed me in!
  9. God answered his prayers and made my dream come true.
  10. Got to take Gus to the movies this afternoon!
  11. Nana & Papa watched Beau for us.
  12. Eaton Square… got to see a full price movie for half price.
  13. Gus put his arm around me and pressed his little face up against mine for the last 5 minutes of the movie… it was awesome.
  14. Taco Bueno for lunch!
  15. Got to see my old boss when I went to pick up my taxes this afternoon.  He always makes me feel like a million bucks- such a sweet guy.
  16. Fun trip to Sam’s with Papa & Beau… all the party supplies for Beau’s big party tomorrow has been purchased.
  17. Got the sandwich tray order in at Target in just the nick of time.
  18. Gus & Beau got to hang out with their cousins Ryan & Olivia tonight.  Those 4 have a lot of fun together.
  19. Nana & Papa watched all the kids so we could go out with my sister in law Brooke and her husband Scott.
  20. Really delicious dinner at Osaka!
  21. Enjoyed sitting by Brooke at dinner and catching up with her.
  22. Lots of laughing took place tonight.
  23. Cold enough to have the fire place going all day… ready for spring, but I love the fire place.
  24. Josh took Gus out to birthday shop for me this afternoon and Gus has been a great secret keeper.  Every time I ask what they got me he says, “my lips are sealed.”
  25. Got our car all fixed up and it wasn’t an expensive repair.
  26. Already been getting lots of Happy Birthday love on FB!
  27. Birthday girl gets to sleep in tomorrow!

Day 198

Every time I go to Babies R Us and see the signs in the parking lot that read “this spot is reserved for expectant mothers” I’m always tempted to park in those spots.  Not because I’m always pregnant, but because I am always expecting!

Everyone is expectant if you really stop and think about it.  My daughter Beau was expecting to get to ride the Elmo firetruck when we pulled in to the parking lot.  I was expecting to find a gift for my sister in law.  A grandpa was expecting to find a toy for his grandson.  The new mom was expecting to find the perfect rocking chair for her nursery.  Everyone who entered the store today was expecting… weather they were aware of it or not.

Philippians 1:20 according to my earnest expectation and hope that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but will all boldness, as always, so now also Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death. 

I love this verse.  Paul is in chains, yet he is earnestly expecting a move from God.  The Greek expresses to earnestly expect as “expectation with uplifted head and outstretched neck.”  Paul is not just sitting around waiting for something to happen he is eagerly desiring God to do something amazing like a baby bird eagerly desires its mother to drop some food its mouth.  His head is lifted up and his neck is stretched toward heaven in earnest expectation.

I think sometimes we are afraid to expect things of God or maybe we think it’s rude… I mean after all, He did already send His one and only son to die for us, isn’t that enough?  Of course Jesus is enough, but there is nothing wrong with expecting God to work in your life.  He wants us to expect great things from Him because He loves to show us how great He is!

Ephesians 3:20 Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us,

God is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think.  This lets us know that it’s okay to ask and think and expect things from God, because if we aren’t asking or thinking about the things we would like to see Him do then how will it be possible for him to go exceedingly abundantly above those things?

If I want to do something just completely over the top for my son, I need him to have an expectation first.  If I take him to Braum’s and he’s expecting an ice cream cone and I get him a banana split with extra cherries on top he will know that I have gone exceedingly abundantly above what he was expecting.

God wants us to wake up everyday earnestly expecting, to get out of bed with an uplifted head and an outstretched neck, in hopes that He is going to go beyond our wildest dreams.  Ask, think, and expect great things of God so he can show you greater things!

  1. God wants to go above and beyond all that we ask or think.
  2. He’s able to go above and beyond all that we ask or think!
  3. We can wake up earnestly expecting God to do great things in our lives.
  4. Babies R Us for being so thoughtful to offer close spots to all the “expecting” mammas.
  5. I got what I was expecting… a gift for my little nephew who will make his entrance into the world on Friday!
  6. Sweet little fluffy haired Gus climbing into my chair and resting on me while I finished my quiet time.
  7. Beau’s goal at lunch was making everyone who laid eyes on her smile… she achieved it.
  8. She never gets her feelings hurt when someone mistakes her for a boy.  Crazy people!  She’s way too pretty to be a boy!
  9. In N Out!  Seriously, it’s so awesome I can just go there for lunch whenever I want to.
  10. Clean house!
  11. Beau was so happy to get a $1 thing of new bubbles.
  12. Beau picked out her outfit today and she looked adorable.  Who says it has to be raining to wear your favorite green rain boots?
  13. Another beautiful afternoon!
  14. Gus told me they talked about how much God loved them at school today.
  15. Gus got a pretty bad black eye today when he ran into something at recess, but his actual eye was protected.
  16. Beau comes in the kitchen every night while I’m making dinner and asks me “whatcha makin?”  She was excited when I answered with egg rolls.
  17. Everyone enjoyed their dinner and both kids cleaned their plates.
  18. Josh brought home surprise ice cream sandwiches and totally made the kids night!
  19. We found Gus’ bat mobile that has been missing for months!
  20. Pushing my big girl on the swing.
  21. My last few nights reading to Beau in the nursery rocking chair.
  22. I had 2 great showers when I was pregnant with Beau and she had such a pretty nursery thanks to all of our family and friends.
  23. New Elephant & Piggie Book “Let’s Go For A Drive.”
  24. The bubbles only cost $1.  Gus spilled them after about 30 seconds of them being opened.
  25. Very relaxing night in bed watching one of my favorite shows with my favorite person.
  26. Josh got out of bed to check on the kids and set the alarm when neither of us felt like doing it.
  27. Got Beau laughing so hard tonight she could barely breath.