I was thinking today, as we drove home…about being thankful. Its easy, I thought to myself, to be thankful when your gathered around the thanksgiving table. Its easy to be thankful when all the food is piping hot, and waiting for you to devour it. Its easy to be thankful…when you are hungry, and there is a good meal laid out before you. But what about other times?
What about after your done eating? And theres all those dishes to do?
I suppose, I thought to myself, I should be thankful to the ability to be grouchy ABOUT dishes! Thinking that out loud sparked a thought.
Am I really thankful?
I mean, thankful ALL the time?
Sadly, no. I am not. I get mad. I get frustrated. I get fed up. I get so very Unthankful its almost pitiful.
With Thanksgiving fast approaching, I have really been stuck on this topic. Thankfulness. And what it means.
I have a list of things that need to be accomplished.
And last week, my mind went ramped with this list. At lightening speed these thoughts were all racing around my head, and I couldn’t think of anything except “HOW AM I GOING TO GET ALL THIS DONE!” In a moment of frustration I ran upstairs and quickly wrote out about twenty things that were on my mind at THAT moment, taking up space, keeping me from what I really needed to be focused on.
When I got done I had a brief moment of “Im never going to get all that done” before I realized…each one of those “Burdens” were actually things I should be thankful for. Each one of those things causing me frustration should be cause for happiness. For thankfulness. When I looked at the list in THAT light, things suddenly had a different spin on them.
Instead of thinking of what I HAD to do for dinner; I thought of what I was really doing. Being upset because we had so much food to eat that I had to think of which item TO prepare??
Instead of thinking of all the bills that needed to be paid; I realized that these were things that we don’t NEED but have simply because we WANT and have the ability to pay for.
Instead of stressing about all these gifts that we HAVE to get for people; I began to remember all the times we have been blessed with something from someone, and was reminded to be thankful for the ability to not only have the means to give these people a gift, but for the ability to THINK about these people, PURCHASE a gift, and everything else that’s involved.
There was so much more than twenty things to be thankful for, that suddenly…the “unthankfulls” on my list had multiplied into a giant list of things to be thankful for.
A simple meal turned into something that I had five good reasons to be thankful – not only do we have enough food to eat, we each have the ability TO eat. We each have hands that work, minds that work, mouths that work. Bodies. That work.
So much to be thankful for, that its almost impossible to think of something NOT to be thankful for!!!
As I looked over this past year, I looked at my small list.
So many things that I had scribbled down in a fit of despair, had reminded me, in more than one way, that these things, were really blessings.
Merely inconveniences. Nothing more. A change of perspective. A different outlook. A lighter heart.
A grateful humble attitude.
How DARE I be unthankful or ungrateful!
I have so much more than I need, and I have so MUCH to be thankful for.