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Gratitude in Action

I am Thankful for…

…the mess to clean after a party because it means I have been surrounded by friends.
…the taxes I pay because it means that I am employed.
…the clothes that fit a little too snug because it means I have enough to eat.
…my shadow who watches me work because it means I am out in the sunshine.
…a lawn that needs mowing, windows that need cleaning and gutters that need fixing because it means that I have a home.
…the spot I find at the far end of the parking lot because it means I am capable of walking.
…all the complaining I hear about our government because it means we have freedom of speech.
…my huge heating bill because it means that I am warm.
…the lady behind me in church who sings off key because it means I can hear.
…the piles of laundry and ironing because it means my loved ones are nearby.
…the alarm that goes off in the early morning hours because it means that I’m alive.
…weariness and aching muscles at the end of the day because it means I have been productive.

I found the above poem today while reading through sermons and illustrations of thanks. I liked it because genuine gratitude is being thankful for everything. Notice all the gratitude actions above could easily be turned around into complaints and often do. But just by tweaking them a bit, you can turn a negative into a positive.

This week, and the rest of this blessed season, I urge all of us to tweak our perception of the world. Instead of seeing the long line at the grocery store, look at the bounty in your cart, and praise God you have it. Instead of cursing your boss for high expectations, be glad for your work and put your heart and soul into it. We have this one life, and happiness and gratitude are God’s gifts that make it genuinely worthwhile.

Please know that I’ll be thankful when my alarm goes off early on Sunday because that means I get to share my morning and God’s word with you.

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