Today the United States are celebrating Thanksgiving Day. A day set aside for being thankful. Indeed, we have much for which to be thankful. The list is long so I won’t make such an attempt here, but family and friends are near the top of the list. At the top of the list is a living God who cares for us.
We have become a highly critical society which finds great difficulty in expressing thankfulness. We find ourselves living in regret for the way some areas of our lives have turned out, rather than being thankful for the things that have gone well and blessed us.
If we were to take a few minutes today to make a list of those things for which we are thankful, our hearts might be filled with gratitude for those parts of our lives for which money is not a solution. During the years of my youth, we had few material things, but we had each other as a family. To be perfectly honest, I wasn’t always overflowing with thanks for each member of my family, but even in my days of discontent I knew my parents and my siblings had my back and would be there. There were days during my career when my job seemed to bring more stress than joy, but at least I had a job.
Life is filled with choices. We can choose to be thankful or to feel unfulfilled and dissatisfied. We can be jealous of the next guy’s car or thankful for the one we have. We can let ourselves be caught in the race to keep up with the “Jones'” or we can be thankful that we have a roof over our head. Some have made choices that have landed them in situations with no roof over their heads. Even in these choices, there is always tomorrow and the opportunity to change direction.
Thankfulness is an attitude that is chosen. It is a spirit that can be contagious and bless people around you or your spirit can push others away. Some of the most thankful people I’ve met are those who seemingly have the least in terms of material things.
For this Thanksgiving Day, I am choosing to be thankful for dear friends and the way we love up on each other ready to help at a moments notice. I’m thankful for two daughters and the loving sons-in-law that they brought into our lives and the five grandchildren who bless us at every interaction. I’m thankful for a wife of 49 years who loves me even on days when I do things that don’t make her happy. I’m thankful for 49 years of family building that we’ve accomplished together, even for some of the bumps in the road that have made us stronger.
I’m praying that you too are choosing to count your blessings and finding much for which to be thankful.