Perhaps it is the time of year, but I keep bumping into the realization that gratitude is a powerful avenue for grace and goodness in our lives. Which means that I have also become acutely aware of my heart’s lack of it. I have come to see that my perspective on most things is directly correlated to my gratitude in that area. For example, when my thoughts regarding someone I love seem to be overly critical, I realize that it is tied to a disproportionate focus on the qualities this person lacks or mistakes he or she has made. Once I start to consider the many wonderful qualities of that person or ways that person blesses me, my critique softens and my perspective widens.
Living without enough gratitude essentially means that we are constantly focused on what we, or others, lack. It breeds discontentment and sets us up for strive. As with the formation of all spiritual disciplines, I need to make deeper gratitude a habit in order to become a more thankful person. I have heard of people keeping gratitude journals, and I thought I would try it. It’s nothing elaborate, but I simply daily write a couple of lines about someone or something I am thankful to God (the source of all good) for in my life. In keeping with this mindset, I thought I would spend the month of November blogging about some big things we have to be thankful for in our lives.