Posts Tagged ‘gratitude’

Thanksgiving 2013

How strange!  I find myself just as grateful this year as I was last year, which I take as a very good sign.  Perhaps I have finally reached the place where I more regularly see that glass as half full rather than half empty.  There is no doubt in my mind that having an attitude of gratitude can make a big difference in how we live.

Since what I wrote about for last Thanksgiving still holds true (why not take a minute and read it after you finish this) I thought I would talk about some of the things I am grateful for today.  My family will always top the list, as well as the friends who keep me on the straight and narrow.  For today, though, I am feeling lots of gratitude that all of the dead leaves that cluttered our yard have been bagged and hauled away.  We are not getting any younger, and each year this seems more difficult to accomplish.


ImageI am grateful for a sunny day and the reign of high pressure.  I may be especially sensitive to pressure, because I always feel so much better when the sun shines full out.  That extra pressure gives me energy, I suspect.  Just had an odd thought — perhaps I should look at the pressures life tosses at me in the same way.  I need them to energize my life.

I am grateful for all the crystals I hang in my windows so the sun can make rainbows (I seem to be back to the sun again, but then, where would we be without it.  I am grateful for mood changes, as I seem to be in a quirky kind of mood today.  I used to try to squash those feelings because I felt they made me an odd ball.  I am grateful that I have embraced my oddness.

My husband often tells people that he is grateful to be still “above ground.”  Lately I have been borrowing that phrase because as the years pass, we lessen the amount of time we can be there, so despite a few aches and pains, we should be grateful.  Nonetheless, I do not appreciate the thought of ever being “underground” so I think I will also be grateful that I am not just a body, but am spirit as well.  Indeed, I think I will be grateful this Thanksgiving for my everlasting spirit. (more…)

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Enjoy what you have rather than desiring what you don’t have. Just dreaming about nice things is meaningless; it is like chasing the wind. (Eccles. 6:9)

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Have you ever gone hungry for any length of time? Have you ever left a table wishing you had more to eat? Think about how this feels, even if you have not experienced it. Quite a few of us doubtless have even more than we need of the world’s goods.   Many of us regularly donate used clothing and household goods to charities, which is an indication of our abundance.

It never ceases to amaze me that I can have so many “things” and still find myself attracted to more. During holiday periods, just reading the advertising (or seeing it on television) can make us long for more.   If I am honest with myself, a lot of the things I purchase are things I want rather than things I truly need.  Our culture (and our advertising and our media) encourages us to think that something new will be better than that which we already have.

Every year, I am amazed that once the Thanksgiving holiday is over in the U.S. (and now even before) people line up waiting for stores to open so they can get great “deals” on the things they wish to purchase.  Watching what happens when those stores finally open looks like a feeding frenzy in an aquarium.   Does all that buying fill some need in us?  If we feel some elation over our purchases, how long does this last?

It can be very helpful for all of us, no matter how much or how little we have, to cultivate a grateful heart. I lean toward being the kind of person who sees the negative rather than the positive side of things. It is one of the things I work on almost daily. The strange thing is that negativity produces more negativity, but when you become aware of the many things you should be grateful for, you find even more of them.

I got some help from a book called Simple Abundance which suggested keeping a gratitude journal in which you wrote down at least five things you were grateful for at the end of each day. I did it for over a year, and still do it at times. Some days my list only includes my gratitude for breath, vision, hearing, food, and shelter, but often I find other, far more specific and special things—especially if I look for them.

When we become aware of how much we have, and regularly give thanks for it, we will be far less likely to buy things just for the sake of buying them.   Cultivating an attitude of gratitude helps to feed that ‘hunger for more’ that all of us feel from time to time.   There is nothing wrong with buying gifts for others (or ourselves) when we can afford to do so.   However, we humans need to be more aware of enjoying what we already have.

Taken from “Talks with our Creator” for December 7th

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Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness, come before him with joyful songs. Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his. We are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good and his love enduresforever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.  (Ps. 100)



In the United States, a day is set aside to give thanks on the fourth Thursday in November. Why do we not, all of us, take more time regularly to be thankful for what we have? Why does it seem so much easier to complain about what we do not have than to appreciate that which we do?

Some of us may tend to feel a bit saddened as days grow shorter and we have less light in our daily lives. One way to deal with depression is to get into actions of some sort, and yet this is often the last thing anyone who feels depressed wants to do. What seems to help me most is shifting my attitude from one in which I complain about all that’s wrong with my life, and begin trying to be grateful for all the things I do have.

An attitude of gratitude can work absolute miracles in our lives. When we stop to think about it, we can usually find mountains of things for which to be grateful. Perhaps the most important is that we have allowed Spirit to be a regular part of our lives. Sometimes it’s hard to find subjects for these reflections, but I keep writing them because I have begun to believe that Spirit speaks to me (and hopefully sometimes to some of you) as I write them. Today, I am particularly grateful for the voice of the Spirit—that still, small voice that always speaks to us if we are but willing to listen.

May we all have a Happy Thanksgiving and may we remember to try to carry that attitude of thanksgiving with us throughout the year.  When we focus on our difficulties, we see more of these in our lives.  However, when we focus on those things for which we are grateful, Spirit allows us to see more and more of them.

Taken from the Thanksgiving page in “Talks with our Creator”

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