The Gratitude Project: Week Seven

This week, we celebrated Independence Day, and I realized I have never written a specific post for that day. However, this year I did a microblog about Independence Day, with one of our family’s favorite quotes by John Stuart Mill. Clicking on the image below will take you to my Independence Day thoughts.


The more I considered this week’s gratitude post, the more I realized I was grateful for a theme which can be found on the 4th of July, but viewed in a slightly different light. While I am grateful for this country, and maintain optimism in her trajectory, this week’s gratitude post actually has little to do with the festivities we enjoyed earlier this week. Yet, there is a common thread between the celebrations and this week’s Gratitude Project.


This week, I am most grateful for freedom. But, not just the freedom that comes with our great country.

Instead, I am grateful for the freedom to know God – for the free will He gives us… to pursue Him, to know Him, and to love Him.

Too often, I overlook God’s patience in my life…

…His patience in me.

When I struggle with prayer, when I lose my temper, when I doubt His plans for me, He is always waiting for me to recognize Him. He doesn’t force Himself on me, but yet, He waits patiently for me to recognize the error of my ways…

…He waits for me to return to following Him as a disciple of Christ.

He does that for all of us – patiently waiting, tugging gently at our souls.


He wants us to recognize Him, and turn to Him.

He wants us to want Him.

He wants us to choose to praise Him.

But, He doesn’t demand we do so. 

Ultimately, I believe we will all be called to atone for straying from the path of discipleship, but I love that He gives us the choice…

He gives us the choice to follow His path, or to reject His teachings.

If we choose to follow His path, He asks us to jump feet first, unconditionally. He knows we will struggle, and He knows we may have our doubts.

God doesn’t require perfection from us, but if we say we accept Him, He requires acknowledgment and acceptance of His role in our salvation.

Through the acknowledgment and acceptance of His role, we will be transformed.


The act of committing to a life of discipleship, of our own free will, allows us the opportunity to prove the depths of our love for Him – and, to recognize the sacrifice He made for all of us. 

Once again, I stand in awe of God’s mercy and love for us – never demanding, but instead, patiently waiting. And, I recognize I am being called to emulate His patience and love to those in my life.

So, while I am grateful for the United States and its independence this week, I am even more grateful for the freedom to believe in God, and to worship and praise Him of my own accord.

What about you? What are you most grateful for this week? Let me know in the comments, or link up with your own post!

Until next week, dear reader…

8 thoughts on “The Gratitude Project: Week Seven

  1. Anni – grateful this week (& every week) for faith, family, friends, fellowship & the freedom we have with the love of Christ to be set free from our fears.
    grace, peace & freedom – Virginia 💜😎💜

  2. Having a roof over the household’s heads, walls around us, a floor and pretty good domestic tech to boot, may not be top of my list at the moment, but it’s near there.

    I’ve been reminded recently that not everyone enjoys that comparative and conditional security.

    About freedom and related ideas – – – I suspect that free will is among the most frightening aspects of human nature, for folks who stop and think about its implications. ‘I can do what I want’ can feel good, until it’s joined by knowledge that decisions come with consequences.

    About your Independence Day piece, very well said. There may be few less-fortunate, in one sense, folks – than those who see no good other than their own well-being. And that’s another topic.

    1. Thank you!! And, yes, the concept that I can do what I want, but then thinking about the consequences? Super daunting. It calls to mind the piece I was working on for Catholic Sistas today, and Our Lady of Fatima’s warning that “If men knew what eternity was like, they would do everything in their power to change their lives.”

      Thanks for leaving your thoughts and your gratitude list! 🤗

  3. I am ever so grateful to know you, Anni. If I didn’t….I would not have been able to read this post which so clearly states my beliefs also! You are a blessing.

  4. Our free will is often so overlooked. Our free will is such a gift, a gift we can squander for sure, but without free will, we would never know real and true love. God didn’t program us to love him, because that wouldn’t really be love at all. It would be programming.
    A great thing to be grateful for, for sure!

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