Thursday, November 27, 2008

Being Thankful

Today is Thanksgiving Day in the United States. I think it is great that one day has been designated as a day to be thankful for things. What I think would be even better is if everyone was more thankful during the entire year and maybe we just had one day to be ungrateful and to not give thanks for what we have! That is a joke by the way.

As I thought about this blog idea I actually started to wonder if "thankful" was a word or if my English language skills were really getting bad after 10 years in Germany. So, I looked at an online dictionary to see if it is really a word and it sure is! Not only is thankful an actual word but the definition fits with my idea for this blog. The dictionary says thankful means, conscious of benefit received. Today is a day when we should be conscious of the benefits we have received.

Just before posting this blog I got home from my Thursday night Bible study and I can look at this two ways. I can be thankful that I have a place to go on Thursday night where people want to learn more about the Bible or I can be grumpy that it is late and it takes me about an hour to get home. Being thankful is a matter of perspective and focusing on the blessings we do have and not on whatever may not be so great. Everyone faces challenges in life but spending all of our time thinking about them will not only lead us to be unthankful (if that is even a word) but we will have a negative outlook on life and be a person no one wants to be around.

We need to start counting our blessings, as they say, and see how blessed we really are. So often we have a lot of positive things going on but we look at the negative. For example, when I saw the advertisement for this apartment they said it has a view of the Rhine River, which is cool. What they didn't say is that my apartment also has a "view" of a major street on one side and a "view" of the railroad tracks on the other side! I like my apartment and when I look out the window I choose to be thankful I have a view of the Rhine River and I don't focus on the traffic or the train. To me that is what it means to be thankful, focus on the good and positive things and don't let the negative side of things be all that you see. Happy Thanksgiving and remember to be thankful for all that God has done for you!

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