My youngest son rested in his car seat directly behind me as I opened a bag of Sun Chips and then shifted into drive. Getting up to speed, I eased my hand into the bag. But before the chip made to to my mouth, a little voice from the back said, “Daddy?”
“Yes?” I answered.
“Pray,” he said.
To him, it must have seemed like an unspoken rule.
“Saying grace.” “Asking the blessing.” “Giving thanks.” Whatever you call it, let it be about gratitude. If we cannot find some genuine measure of gratitude as we pray, then we miss the benefit. It is difficult to be thankful and bitter at the same time. It’s hard to identify a list of things for which you are grateful without setting aside anger, cynicism, or anxious thoughts.
G.K. Chesterton said, “Gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.”
Eckhart Tolle remarked that, “Acknowledging the good you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance.”
If you are not thankful for what you have, then you probably won’t be grateful for what may come you way. Take a moment today to make a top ten list of what deserves your gratitude.
Here’s a list of some of my favorite things.
(Schnitzel with noodles did not make the cut.)
- The quiet of a full house before dawn
- My wife’s eyes as she laughs
- The sweet smell of Hemlocks on the Chimneys trail in the Smoky Mtns.
- Rabbit-eye blueberries in sourdough pancakes
- Pithy wit
- Pavarotti singing Puccini
- The promise of a new book cued-up in my Kindle
- A mandolin played in new grass style
- A true story, well-told, with embellishment
- A sincere compliment about one of my children
What would you add from your list? (click comment)
1 Thessalonians 5:18
Cliff Foreman says
PBS American Experience last week was about Bradford and the Pilgrims. Despite watching half of the colony die in the first winter at Plymouth, Bradford continually expressed his thanks to God for overwhelming mercy. Part of me wants to ask what in the world he was so thankful for. Mainly he seems to be thankful for salvation, which transcends all of his difficulties and gives him a constant sense of the mercy of God. That gives me hope that even if I face difficulties I will always have something to be overwhelmingly thankful for.
1 Peter 1:3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, 5 who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7 These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. 8 Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, 9 for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
Tim Filston says
Inspiring–and hard to fathom in our age of spring-loaded entitlement, where every other commercial tells me how deserving I am and where anything that goes wrong may get litigated. Is deprivation the only lens that let us see simple gifts as gratuitous?