First off, thank you to everyone who expressed interest and then was patient and understanding when I didn’t show up on Friday with my post as planned. Life did some unexpected things and I spent most of the weekend on the road. But I’m back now, and here’s the promised post!

If you want to participate, link up at the bottom of the post with your own 5 (or more! I couldn’t stop and did 10) unnamed thanks to people who have made 2013 a better, more whole, more healing year. I’m going to be specifically talking about people from the Christian blogging community in mine, but I think that it doesn’t have to be that narrow. I just thought, for mine, that since it’s so easy to be quick to write each other off over a disagreement online, we sometimes neglect to appreciate positive things about each other in the ‘sphere. And I want to push back against that.

  1. Thank you for your caution in how you discuss hard issues. You get a lot of flack for your reticence, but I see what you’re doing, translating between realms and watching your tone for the sake of everyone, not for the sake of saving yourself online drama. I see the selflessness in this approach and know the hours and painstaking work of revising and adjusting it must take. You’re doing it well and I deeply admire your work and what you’ve been able to achieve.
  2. Thank you for your brash honesty, for being comfortable with not knowing what you believe all the time but comfortable with sharing the learning process with us all. The sincerity and curiosity you display is, I think, symptomatic of you becoming of a whole person as you embrace vulnerability and truth in your journey. I admire this about you a lot.
  3. Thank you for how much you love. I know you’re struggling with feeling out of place and not sure if you’re hitting all the right notes socially in this weird and wonderful online world, but the thing I love most about you is how sincere you are about your affections and care for others, for your family, for the things that make you excited. You’ve walked through hell and you’re not jaded. That’s amazing.
  4. Thank you for playing big sister to the outcasts of the church who congregate in comments sections and aren’t sure if they have a voice or not. Your perpetual hope in the value of a soul burdened with purpose is inspiring. Lives have been seriously changed for good because of your vision.
  5. Thank you for your incisive, non-stop analytical skills. Your intellectual integrity is something we all need to learn from, and I know you’ve moved on to other things, but while you were here, your research and thorough analysis was a tempering voice amid all of our questions and FEELINGS and I so loved that.
  6. Thank you for your love of beauty. Your intimate reflections on God and life and community and ordinary things have been, at points, a really wonderful oasis of meditation and reflection for me and for many others.
  7. Thank you for your maturity. Your voice has shifted, your tone has changed, and we’ve all collided into your blog with our vim and vigor and been sat down at your place and made to be quiet and think bigger than the insides of our own heads for a few minutes. We need you in these parts. Thanks for what you do.
  8. Thank you for your depth of compassion. Your knowledge is tempered by pain and that lends you the ability to hear the wounded in ways that many of us easily skip over in our race to make a point. Please don’t stop writing.
  9. Thank you for your sass and anger. I love how you are 100% wherever you are, I love how you are consistent online and in person, and I love how you are embracing vulnerability and growth with gusto and humor.
  10. Thank you for your absence. I don’t mean that I’m glad you’re gone–I’m not, and our community is often the poorer for it. But what I mean is that I am glad you have prioritized balance and personal health and perspective over the fear of missing out or the fear of not saying something that someone NEEDS to hear now. It takes actual real humility to shut up and sit out and just live, and I have learned a lot from your example of this. And not in a cheesy churchy way. For real.


  • Abbi S

    Thanks first to Hännah for letting me post here since I don’t have a blog. :)

    1. Thank you for always being there for your friends. You were the first one I thought of whom I needed to thank, and here’s a great example. Without complaining, you gave up your evening (on a work night) to spend two hours driving so you could bail me out of a tight spot. That’s just the way you love your friends. It’s an understood that those who need help can turn to you. That’s an amazing thing. Thanks.

    2. Thank you for being patient with me when I didn’t understand; when I thought I did, and only made things worse. It must have been hard to let things go when they hurt, but you chose to believe the best of me. You decided to love me anyway and to move on. Thanks for showing the maturity of a good friend.

    3. Thank you for listening. You hear things others can’t hear. You weigh things quietly, in the depths of your mind and heart, and you observe the little things that others miss. Or you see the big picture that we were all too distracted to take in. Your compassion is marvelous. I am in awe of this. Thanks for showing that age is not always the best indicator of wisdom.

    4. Thank you for your perseverance. I know this isn’t something you think you excel in, and because of your skills in many other areas, it is not always the first thing I’d thank you for. But underneath your hand which is delicately practiced in the art of making all things beautiful, and behind your eyes which are adept at seeing beauty, you have immense courage to keep on making and seeing in the face of things that are not beautiful. There is a strength not your own holding you, and yet it becomes your own.

    5. Thank you for letting your heart lie open to the rains to make it grow. You have made a few decisions within the past year to intentionally open yourself where previously you would have shut others off. You have been through so much, and somehow, it has made you more beautiful than ever. The rawness hurts, I know, but you are growing like never before. I am so proud of you.

  • http://www.estheremery.com/ Esther Emery

    Ahh… Well, I’m glad I did what I did. It was really good for me. But now I see what you were doing, and I appreciate it a lot. I don’t know that I am connected enough to do this. (And I was never on Xanga. Ha!) But I do see our blogging community as community, even if I don’t always act on that. Thanks for the good thoughts.

  • http://www.allthingstruthful.wordpress.com/ Bethany Grace Paget

    http://allthingstruthful.wordpress.com/2013/11/19/thank-you/

    Here is my thankfulness post. I am so glad you did this. It really helped me to see that through the YUCK of this year that there truly was a lot to be thankful for and not necessarily in the traditional way of being thankful. It caused me to shift my focus from the shit to how those around me helped move me through it.

    I love you dear one,

    Bethany

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