Our family celebrated Thanksgiving a wee bit early this year…on the 10th instead of the 22nd. Saturday morning – our Thanksgiving – dawned with cloudy skies, chilly winds, and my heart full of things I’m thankful for.
Being thankful was something that was always valued in our family. Proper etiquette demands it, the Bible teaches it, and experience champions it. Being thankful has improved my quality of life over and over, probably more times than I can even keep track of. Back when I was really sick (with Lyme disease for seven years), I learned that nothing could turn a horrible day into a good day like changing my mindset. And what better way to change one’s mindset from negative to positive than to think of things one has to be thankful for?
Each morning when I awake I think of a list of things I’m thankful for. I used to think up exactly ten things, but in the last few years, I’ve forgone the counting and just go with the first several ones that come to mind. Sometimes I do it as a prayer, thanking God for things specifically, other times I do it simply to remind myself of all the blessings I have in my life. I’ve been doing this for over six years now and highly recommend it. (Seriously, folks. Think about it…What better mindset to start the day with than a thankful one? It really sets a good tone for the rest of the day.)
The other day I was working in the kitchen and I was feeling grumpy. I had just had an encounter with a very stressed out and whiny individual and I felt the negative attitude pulling me down. (Me: God, can you please make this person change right now because I don’t feel like having patience with them right now!) After several minutes of me battling with frustration, I remembered that I had a lot to be thankful for. So, right there in then as I worked at cleaning up a very messy kitchen I started thanking God – out loud – for various blessings in my life. And do you know what? It helped.
We all have something to be thankful for. It doesn’t matter where we are in life, what we have going on, or how many horrible things are happening to you. Sometimes it’s easier to be thankful than other times. But do you know what? When you make a habit of consciously being thankful in the good times, then it’s easier to carry that over to the hard times.
Y’all. Thanksgiving (like, the real one on the calendar) is right around the corner. And do you know what? I’m so thankful that I get to celebrate twice. 😉