It isn’t hard to name off the usual list of things we are grateful for during Thanksgiving dinner: God, family, friends, etc. The more difficult work involves living it, day in and day out.
In the inspiring book, “One Thousand gifts”, Ann Voskamp describes how being grateful for the small, daily things and recording them brought transformation to her heart and life. It is a book I highly recommend, not just to read, but to implement. I know I should be grateful, but in the business of life, I can get so wrapped up in “stuff” that I forget. I forget to be thankful. Laundry waiting. Deadlines. Kid stuff. Schedules to follow. Places to go. People to see. Dinner to cook. A million details run through our minds, occupying space meant for gratitude.
What does it take to slow down, to be thankful, in the common, everyday places in our lives? Grateful for this moment, this breath. And the next. Thankful for a gentle breeze, sunny sky and green, yellow and orange leaves. What about gratitude even for interruptions, dirty socks and dirty dishes. Can I be grateful even when my car breaks down, my computer quits or a loved one is sick? How do we find gratitude in the hard times?
We know the verse, “In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” (1 Thessalonians 5:18) But how do we live it? I know I fall far short of this, but instead of letting condemnation take hold, let’s just commit to take this moment and be grateful. Wherever you find yourself, in whatever circumstances, press through and find something to be grateful for. Write it down. And keep on writing until you get to 1000.
Who does not thank for little will not thank for much.
– Estonian proverb