I just decided to journal five gratitudes daily for the rest of the year.
My gratitude-themed journals lie too far in the past, and the mention of gratitudes I do now in my journaling has become rather sparse.
Oh, I do give thanks for something each day, already, mentally, in passing; I really do. But I think daily journaling of things to be thankful for gives the gratitude attitude a special boost—along with positivity–and hope! And it keeps a record of blessings that I might forget too easily otherwise—which could come in handy to review when rising Covid figures or declining financial figures threaten to throw me into a Slough of Despond.
Many unique blessings bombard me every day, but the present global circumstances can steal my attention from them all, and if I don’t watch out I’ll be like the people mentioned in Psalm 4:6 “who say, ‘Who can show us any good?’”
A little review of just a few journal pages can show me a lot of good!
I think I’m going to do it in the evening, my gratitude journaling, before I hit the sleep sack, because (I’ve just learned) studies show this may even help me get better sleep.
What kind of things might I give thanks for? Big things, of course. Like getting to see and hug my family members and close friends…
Which, hmm, wait a minute, I can’t do this year!
So, well, I can’t give thanks for the hugs or the physical presence, but I can certainly give thanks for those family members and friends.
Thinking about this, I find gratitude welling right up in my heart (and tears in my eyes), for each one who’s still alive!
And gratitude for life itself is a big one. Lately the preciousness of every life, of every living thing, has impressed itself on me more than I think it ever has in my whole… life!
But expressing gratitude for “little things” has a special power, too, methinks: power to sharpen all my senses, enabling me to live life more intently, intensely, more fully.
A few weeks ago on a walk, noticing one beautifully colored leaf, picking it up, thanking God for its vibrant beauty, and carrying it with me like a little kid, heightened my awareness—and enjoyment—of other leaves: like the multitude of tiny little spear-shaped ones scattered ahead of my footsteps like a gleaming golden carpet, and more showering down from branches above.
Thinking about all this brings an old quote to my mind, and heart:
“The world is so full of a number of things, I’m sure we should all be as happy as kings.” (Robert Lewis Stevenson).
Maybe happier than kings, actually.
In times like the present, it’s too easy to get fixated on the worrisome, the threatening, the looming “Dark” times and things. If there ever were a time in the last half-century when we could use the pickmeup of a daily recording of 3 or 4—myself I like to list 5—“gifts of the day,” “blessings,” “gratitudes,” this is it. And what better time to begin (again), than on Thanksgiving Day?
How about you? Could your Gratitude Attitude use a reboot, too?
9 thoughts on “Thanksgiving! Great day for Rebooting Gratitude!”
I am grateful for your blog. Thank you for your prompt in gratefulness. Psalm 100 was brought to mind.
“Shout for joy to the Lord , all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his ; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.”
Psalms 100:1-5 NIV
Wow! I am so happily surprised–and thankful!–to see a comment from you appearing here! I can now reply personally to your email addresss, which I did not have till now.
May God richly bless you and all yours–though I’m guessing you may be quite scattered from each other in this strange time. May it still be a beautiful and meaningful day!
And thank you for your encouraging comment, Phil. It seems thanksgiving is the best way to enter His gates, doesn’t it?
It’s good to see you in this space again, Sylvie–it’s too infrequent. Once, in the nineties, not too long after our daughter’s birth, I began complaining about God’s direction to leave my career. I felt isolated and frustrated. I was reading a passage in Genesis about the grumbling Israelites, and God used it to convict me of my sin of complaint. I was *constantly* grumbling, bypassing all the blessing in my path, especially time with my darling daughter. The antidote? I began keeping a “joy journal” specifically for the purpose of praising God for His many gifts. It wasn’t a simple listing of them, but an exploration of them, in gratitude to the Giver. It changed me. I’m sure your journaling will bless you again in ways too numerous to count. THANK YOU for sharing, and Happy Thanksgiving!
Thank you, Lynni, for your kind encouragement. Sometimes it’s hard to click that “publish” button, kind of like parachuting out of an airplane for the first time. You are encouraging me in both my blogging and my journaling, which was also starting to lag. I really like the idea of your “joy journal,” especially as it included your exploration of those joys. I will take that as a prompt for myself. And I totally identify with your being convicted by the accounts in Genesis. The same thing has happened to me in those accounts revisited in the Psalms.
Saw this as I was waiting to FaceTime with one of the kids…you were on my mind just the other day…so good to see a post.will respond more later!
And so good to “see” you here, Laurie. Maybe someday we’ll even be able to see each other in person again! Looking forward to that time…
Thank you Sylvia for your encouraging words. There are still many good days ahead and always something to be thankful for. I love it that you picked up a beautiful leaf and examined its wonder.
And thank you for yours, Hazel. Those little things, like that leaf, can focus our distracted minds and calm our anxious spirits, can’t they, if we just “tune in” to their presence?
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