Today’s Word from Laura Canby…
Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. – Psalm 100:4
“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought; and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.” – G.K. Chesterton
As we enter into the season of Thanksgiving, I invite you to be a part of a video that will be played at Trinity’s Thanksgiving Eve Service, which will be in addition to a panel discussion led by Pastor Jim about Tiny Houses in the Name of Christ (THINC).
I will be available in the Sun Walkway at coffee hours to videotape expressions of gratitude for things both large and small.
Let’s take it for granted that you are thankful for family such as spouse, children and parents… as most people are. Rather, let’s hear about the simple joys, the daily blessings, the large concepts, and what moves you into an attitude of gratitude, joyful thankfulness, and a position of praise. Let’s create and share a beautiful mosaic of grateful thoughts.
“It’s not happiness that brings us gratitude. It’s gratitude that brings us happiness.” — Anonymous
We were without power for three days in Clinton, with power poles down at both ends of our road. We were fortunate in that we have a fireplace and a generator. Still, the cold and dark were a nuisance… until I received an email from a friend who forwarded an email from his friend in Ukraine.
The writer is a Pastor of a church in Irpin, Ukraine. He wrote of power outages of 4 to 5 hours as a daily occurrence. This pastor and his family live in a war-torn country, and risked their lived driving refugees out of areas being bombed. He faces an uncertain future, and certainly a cold winter, yet he always signs his emails with: God is good, all the time. All the time, God is good. (Thought you’d like that, Pastor Tom.)
Suddenly the nuisance of our power outage got very small, indeed.
Gratitude doesn’t always need to come in response to contrasting our situation with people less fortunate. Sometimes it is just the sheer beauty of nature or unexpected happenings. Today, for instance, as I drove down my driveway, a huge, regal multi-pronged stag walked in front of my car and then ambled up a trail, stopping momentarily, to acknowledge me with a toss of his antlers.
And who can resist being grateful for the lovely autumn colors as the last leaves go out blazing before winter sets in. Did you know we still have roses blooming in the courtyard? I took this picture below of a courtyard rose several years ago as we had a hard frost. Yes, even in the oncoming winter (my least-favorite season) there is still beauty to be grateful for if I take the time to look.
Medical research is proving the benefit of a thankful heart. Psychologist Robert Emmons, Ph.D., an expert on research into gratitude, writes:
“A decade’s worth of research on gratitude has shown me that when life is going well, gratitude allows us to celebrate and magnify the goodness. But what about when life goes badly? In the midst of the economic maelstrom that has gripped our country, I have often been asked if people can—or even should—feel grateful under such dire circumstances.
My response is that not only will a grateful attitude help—it is essential. In fact, it is precisely under crisis conditions when we have the most to gain by a grateful perspective on life. In the face of demoralization, gratitude has the power to energize. In the face of brokenness, gratitude has the power to heal. In the face of despair, gratitude has the power to bring hope. In other words, gratitude can help us cope with hard times…”
So, think of those things for which you are grateful, folks, and let’s create a video that can uplift others and spread some joy.