Thankfulness

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FallThanksgiving Day in America has a lot of traditions.  People gather with family, eat too much, and take naps.  Some families watch football, some play outside, some go shopping.  When I was a kid we talked about the Pilgrims and the Indians and how they celebrated the harvest together. (That’s clearly out of fashion now, I know.)  Hopefully people still take time to be thankful.  I woke up early today and spent an hour thinking about what I am thankful for.  Here, in no particular order, is my list.  I hope you write your own.

I’m thankful for the beauty of nature, for the natural beauty of the place I live.  (The picture with this post is the view from my kitchen on an autumn afternoon.) I’m thankful for the seasons, each with their own appeal.  I am thankful for my family.  I’m grateful for my husband, that he has stayed with me even though I am a completely different person than the one he married. I’m thankful for my kids and my grandkids, who each have a big place in my heart. I’m grateful for my parents, for their love and example. I appreciate my siblings and their families, who are an important part of who I am. I’m thankful for my extended family and their diverse talents.

I am thankful for my job and the good people I work with.  I’m thankful for my friends from school and church and the neighborhood.  I am grateful for all those who have spoken into my life, shared themselves with me, and taught me.  I’m thankful for the country I live in, with all its resources and opportunities. I’m thankful for my health and the amazing design of the human body, and the incredible diversity of plants and animals around me.

I appreciate the comfort and conveniences of my life.  I’m thankful for hot baths, blankets and pillows, dishwasher and washing machine.  I appreciate all my kitchen gadgets and the opportunity to cook and bake. I’m thankful for my car, not just because it gets me where I need to go, but because it carries what I need and provides a safe and quiet space where I can think.

I’m thankful to God for the opportunity that he has given me to know him and to be with him.  I’m grateful that he has good plans for me, that he has given me a purpose and provided everything I need for life and happiness. I’m grateful that he cares for me and speaks to me.  I’m thankful for his promises and that his word will never fail.  I’m grateful that his love is the one sure thing that I can count on no matter what happens, no matter what I do or fail to do.

Today, and every day, be grateful.  Practice the art of counting your blessings.  It is truly time well spent. All the blessings in your world can only bring you joy if you take the time to appreciate them.