Blessings & Gratitude

blessingsFall is officially here which means it’s time for us to mark our calendars- the holidays are right around the corner. Thanksgiving is a wonderful kickoff holiday that has us gather with our loved ones and reflect on the abundance and blessings in our lives. We observe this day to give thanks for the opportunities we have been afforded as well as send our love, hopes, and prayers for those who are less fortunate.

Many do not realize that living in the United States, we represent up to 75% of the richest people on earth. We often complain that our internet is too slow, our order was wrong at a restaurant, or that traffic was a nightmare. We do this as so many others in the world worry about where they will be sleeping that night or where their next meal will come from.

We prepare a feast for a day of Thanksgiving, sometimes spending hundreds of dollars on a single meal. We eat, scratch our bellies, then we yawn and complain that we ate way too much. A few hours after digestion, we kick off Black Friday where we fight with others over material possessions not even 24 hours after giving thanks for what we already have.

Our focus leans to the “lack” in our lives- we focus too much on wants and desires instead of how fortunate we are. Our lives are lived in the rat race of instant gratification without appreciation just like a fast food drive thru.  We get upset if we have to wait in line or the order was wrong when someone else is going to bed hungry.

Next time you are thinking times are tough, remind yourself someone is suffering even more. We must also appreciate the struggles in life as they teach us strength, compassion, faith, and wisdom. It also helps to make you appreciate more of what you already have and not take it for granted.

You never know someone else’s struggle in this world and the smallest gesture can be a blessing to them. The world needs now more than ever random acts of kindness.  We need less social media and more picking up the phone to tell someone you love them. We need to lend an open ear rather than “liking” a status. Open the door for a stranger, pay for someone’s meal next time you eat out.  You can make a charitable donation to a cause that is important to you, or better yet, donate your time.

Help someone in need, pay it forward. When you give in blessings it will return tenfold to you in ways you could never expect. This is what true ‘giving’ is- it is unselfish and rewarding.

This Thanksgiving we should give gratitude for things such as the love of family, friends, peace, and good health- things money cannot buy. These are the true blessings before you at your Thanksgiving table. Wishing you many blessings before your table and most of all gratitude.

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