Finding Reasons To Be Thankful
Now therefore, our God, we thank thee, and praise thy glorious name. I Chronicles 29:13
I recently visited a reader's blog in which they had done a post on finding something in each day that had made them happy. This happy event was recorded in a daily diary. That got me thinking about being thankful and having gratitude in my life. It would seem that, at my age, I wouldn't need to be reminded so much to be thankful. But, it is easy to get sucked into the day to day living process and to forget that the Lord has blessed me with so many reasons to be thankful! I've read about others who recommend keeping a gratitude journal and that is not a practice I have started. This reader, however, suggested writing just one thing down that made you happy each day. Somehow, being able to write one thing down seems easier than coming up with a list of ten or twenty items on a daily basis. Although, I know that if I am honest there are hundreds of reasons each day that I should be full of gratitude to the Lord. But, sometimes, it's good to start small and grow from there. I'm interchanging words here using "happiness," "thankful" and "gratitude" as if they have the same definition. Actually, each word carries different meanings. Happy is more of a feeling. I can choose to be thankful and have gratitude whether I am feeling happy or not. In case you are curious about the definitions each word carries, I will provide those for you. (For you "wordsmith" readers!)
Happy: 1. feeling or showing pleasure or contentment. 2. fortunate and convenient.
Thankful: 1. pleased and relieved. 2. expressing gratitude and relief.
Gratitude: the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.
(Definitions taken from Merriam-Webster online)
Although each word has something in common with the others, there are still nuances to each word. I am drawn to the definition of thankful that emphasizes being relieved. Perhaps if I concentrate more on things to be thankful for I will be "relieved" of focusing on the concerns of my life. Remember that commercial that used to be on television that asked, "How do you spell relief?" Perhaps one way to spell relief is to remember what we have to be thankful for in our lives! What about you? How do you address being thankful, full of gratitude or being happy in your daily life? Do you keep a diary or journal or reflect on things you are thankful for each day? I'm going to start keeping a notepad by my bedside to write down at least one thing for which I am thankful, full of gratitude for and happy about each day. Care to join me?
I need to do this too. It's way better than thinking how glad I am to have survived another day in that office, which leads to mentally rehashing the horrors of the day. Not good. So yes, I'll join you! It's so easy to get caught up in just day to day stuff that we race from task to task and need to focus on being thankful. Happy is definitely an emotional thing, whereas I see gratitude and thankfulness like you said, as choices. You can still find reasons to be thankful even in the depths of despair. Today is my youngest son's 36th birthday. While it doesn't seem possible that so many years have gone by, I am so very grateful to God for having these years with Josh, for the blessing he has been, how he enriches my life, and that I got to see him today to hug him and tell him he means the world to me. That is my grateful thought for today. I'll have another one tomorrow. Thank you for the inspiration, Debbie!
Debbie, I am touched by this beautifully written spiritual post. For tonight I am grateful that something I mentioned has inspired you to inspire others.
Hope your son had a Happy Birthday, Karen! Glad you were inspired by the post!
Thank you, Tania, for your lovely writing which inspired my post!
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