Stealing this from a blogger friend, because I need this right now...
The Thanksgiving holiday is one of my favorites...food, football, family, friends and lots of fun. But, originally, it was meant to be a day to pause and give authentic thanks to God. Unfortunately, for many, including myself, thanksgiving is more of a one-day holiday that a way of life. I don't know about you, but I've been blessed beyond comprehension, and even in the unwelcome moments of life, I have so much to be thankful for.What would it look like if I ONLY spoke words of gratitude the entire week of Thanksgiving? If I went so far as to look at a pile of laundered clothes that awaits my folding and putting up, a task I normally hate, and instead think and speak out loud, “God, thank you for these clothes, for providing covering.” When my daughter voicing her grumpiness, “God, thank you that she has a voice that works and you are shaping her own unique personality.” If every time next week I see a person, I tell them why I am thankful to God they are in my life.
Can I do this? Of course I can. It will have to be a choice, for so often I let the negative thoughts overtake my mood for the day. But when I think about it, it makes so much sense. There are women out there aching for a baby to hold in their arms, and I have been blessed with five, and all the messes, chaos, and sleepless nights that come with it. There are people living on the streets with just the clothes on their backs, and we have been blessed to be able to provide the clothes that make up the piles, the food that stains the dishes in the sink, the toys scattered on the floor. There are people who would give anything, who seek out, unfinished homes, so that they may have shelter from the cold and night. There are people, like the sweet checker at the local grocery store that greeted us with a smile and a "How ya doin today baby?", who don't know they have blood pressure problems until it is too late to do anything about it. There are people who can't get a job and would love to have work to take home with them. Lonely people who would love to have a schedule packed with things to do, parties to go to, performances to give. There are unsaved all over the world that do not know that matchless grace and love of God and seek love in the arms of others, in needles, in a bottle, in food.
How blessed am I, and how much do I take it for granted? This week, I pledge to live a life of thankfulness and gratitude. I know it won't be easy, that I will have to adopt a new outlook, that I will fail, probably daily. But that I serve an awesome God. A God who forgives. A God who gives second chances. Who loves me unconditionally. And for that, above all, I am truly thankful.