Let’s face it – we’ve all been through a rough time these last couple of years. Pandemics causing panic, markets fueling madness, decisions driving division – the list could go on and on. In times like these, it can be difficult to remember the things that we’re actually grateful for, let alone attempt to practice an overall state of gratitude in our daily lives.
However, if we can do this – if we can remember that we have so much to truly be thankful for – we can change lives.
Grateful for ALL Things
“Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
Read that quote. Did you catch the last part? All things have contributed to your advancement, so they should be included in what we’re grateful for. How’s that for a change in our perspective?
Many of the changes brought about by COVID-19 have made us more thankful for our loved ones and the times that we’re able to share together, even if it is six feet apart. The shortages in supply and the increases in demand have made us more thankful for what we do have and they’ve made us realize that maybe we don’t need as much as we thought.
Communities that have seen havoc wreaked on their streets and fought injustice together have developed a bond like never before.
Everything that we go through in our lives – good and bad – is working to make us the people that we were destined to be tomorrow. Take a moment to be thankful for those things, even as you’re grateful to move past them.
Grateful at ALL Times
It’s not enough to be grateful for ALL things in our lives, we must also attempt to be grateful at ALL times. Gratitude isn’t reserved for when we’re gathered around a feast during the holidays or when we’ve received a blessing we’ve been hoping and praying for, but for the days when life hasn’t been so kind to us.
Why should you be grateful even on days when it seems like the sun will never shine again? Here are a few great reasons:
- Strife reminds you of all the blessings you have in life. Count your blessings, name them one by one, and see if you don’t feel better.
- Faith in the future allows the fleeting bad moments to make way for long-lasting, joyful ones.
- Counting your blessings reminds you that the “small things” really don’t matter. When you step back and focus on the things you should be grateful for, such as health, family, and friends, you’re reminded of what’s truly important.
- Gratitude prompts you to thank those around you. Simply telling someone “thank you” can not only lift your spirits but theirs as well. Give it a try.
A Life of Gratitude is a Life Well Spent
The lovely and talented Lauryn Hill once said, “Everything we do should be a result of our gratitude for what God has done for us.” Living life in a constant state of gratitude ensures that you’re training your mind to reframe your perception of stress and hardship. Gratitude gives you the strength to face tomorrow with thankfulness for what you’ve already been given in life and hope for what the future may bring.