It’s Thanksgiving week, so this post will be short and to the point – no long stories, no rambling thoughts. Many of you will be traveling or cooking or trying to maintain your sanity around your families, so we know there are other things on your mind.
As we approach Thanksgiving, it’s a good time to reflect on the things for which we’re grateful, things both big and small. It may seem like a cliché thing to do, but that doesn’t make it any less worthwhile. So with that said, here are three things we’re thankful for this year.
We’re Thankful for Patience
This may seem like an odd one, but have you ever thought about how great a gift patience is? Being able to patiently wait for things to happen, or for the right moment to take action – whether with your family, at the start of a new relationship, in your job, or what have you – is one of the greatest skills we can learn in life, and we should be thankful when we get there. Waiting is rarely easy and is often frustrating and possibly painful, but patience teaches us to slow down, take a breath, and put our trust in God, because he knows what he’s doing and things will happen the right way in his time. So just breathe, and give thanks.
We’re Thankful for Freedom
This might seem as cliché as saying that we give thanks for anything, but in the world we live in, freedom should not be taken for granted. In recent years we’ve watched terrorist attacks wreck the world. Despotic regimes are in power all over the southern hemisphere and the Middle East. Christians are being persecuted by groups like ISIS and Boko Haram because of their faith. Life in the United States can be frustrating, but we should never forget that we have more or less complete freedom – freedom to say what we want, to (mostly) do what we want, to go where we want, to practice whatever religion we choose. Freedom is being stripped away in other parts of the world, but we continue to tenaciously cling to it here. So enjoy your freedom, and give thanks.
We’re Thankful for the Chance to Say ‘Thank You’
In her book Traveling Mercies, Anne Lamott writes, “Here are the two best prayers I know: ‘Help me, help me, help me’ and ‘Thank you, thank you, thank you’”. We should never pass up the opportunity to say ‘thank you’ – to a neighbor, a friend, a co-worker, a loved one, and particularly to God. It is very easy to forget that everything we have comes from God. In the good times we praise him, but when things aren’t going the way we want – a friend is sick, someone else got the promotion, some other guy got the girl – there is a tendency to harden our hearts and shut God out. Instead, we should look to the heavens and say ‘thank you.’ Thank you for breath, for a roof, for food to eat and friends and family to share it with. Thank you for the chance to grow through our pain and heartbreak. This is a difficult one, but in the long run is the one probably most worth the effort. So drop to your knees with us and give thanks – thank you, thank you, thank you.
And one last thing – a big THANK YOU to those of you read these posts, meditate on them, and share them with others. We hope that you are learning and growing along with us, and we thank you for sharing this journey.