No matter what you may be going through in your life, there is always something you can find for which to be thankful. Sometimes, depending on circumstances, that may be harder than at other times. But just waking up and taking another breath is a blessing. Since we are not promised tomorrow, being given another day of life is a big thing.
Being thankful is an attitude and if you adopt it as yours, life is easier to digest, even in times of grief or stress. If you keep practicing it, gratitude actually becomes like second nature. That doesn’t mean you won’t backslide into grumpiness when you aren’t feeling your best or when someone steps on your overly-sensitive toes. We all have those days but if we get stuck in them for long periods at a time, then that’s a real problem.
I’ve finally learned to forgive myself when I have a really bad day and I don’t perform or act as I should. None of us are perfect and I certainly don’t pretend to be.
During those periods of what I call “mully-grubs” which of course, is not a real word, I find that it helps to actively make a list of things for which I am thankful. I have had a couple of those days lately and though today is not one of them, I do want to share a list of 20 with you. Though it doesn’t begin to cover everything, I wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving.
1. My imperfect relationship with Jesus Christ and family. It’s the thing I treasure most because even on my worst days, God still loves me. My family may not love me quite the same (ha-ha) but they stick with me. On stressful days, I get my feelings hurt much too easily and let emotions get in the way of thinking it through. God knows my heart and understands; family not always so much.
2. Being able to spend time in God’s word. I learn something new or get a new revelation each time even from a passage I have read over and over. It is relevant today, just as it was 100 years or more ago.
3. The talents God has given me like writing, music, public speaking, being able to listen without judgment and discernment for people who need prayer.
4. The United State of America. It’s not perfect either but I currently can express an opinion, have freedom to worship as I please. You can’t say that about all countries.
5. The communities I serve. There are so many incredibly talented and diverse people. And when a tragedy occurs, everyone steps up to the plate with support and encouragement. It’s amazing.
6. A job which I love. When I first went into journalism, I wanted to change the world, I wanted to make a difference. Over the past 40 years, there have been times I actually can document that I have. But more importantly, I get to tell people’s stories of the wonderful things they do and the talents they share with others. I also get to help keep a watch on how government spends the taxpayers’ monies.
7. Employees who I can discuss things with and not worry that it leaves the office, or if we don’t agree we can still work side by side.
8. I’m thankful for rain and the smell of leaves on the ground. We’d like to see some of that rain now I know, and it’s badly needed.
9. Veterans and all those who are serving. Even with all our troubles and problems, men and women still put their lives on the line to keep our country free.
10. Law enforcement. It’s truly dangerous to be in that profession these days and I’m thankful for those who continue to go out day after day to protect the communities they serve. They are a unique and special group of dedicated people.
11. The sound of a child’s laughter. It’s extra special when it’s your child or grandchild, but I love the sound of laughter from every child. Laughter truly is medicine for the soul.
12. Fur babies and those people who rescue them. There’s nothing like going home from a long, stressful day and being met at the door by your fur baby who is so glad to see you every time.
13. A smile from a stranger. Smiles lift your spirit.
14. People who offer encouraging words all the time, even though you know they are having a hard time themselves at the moment.
15. A roaring fire in the middle of winter that is not only relaxing but takes the chill off. Sharing it with loved ones makes it even better.
16. Sitting on the beach listening to the waves. Nothing soothes my soul like the sound of the waves crashing on the shore and being reminded of God’s majesty.
17. A really good book and a good cup of coffee on a lazy day.
18. Holidays with family. Sharing meals, stories and enjoying the fellowship with each other.
19. Planting and taking care of a garden and enjoying the fruits of your labor.
20. People. Meeting new ones all the time and getting to know them and especially those who always say ‘thank you” or offer a pat on the back.
What’s on your thankfulness list? Blessings to each of you who read my meanderings every week.©2016
VICTORIA SIMMONS is an author, columnist, motivational speaker, minister and publisher of The Georgia Post/Byron Buzz. Contact her at: firstname.lastname@example.org