I am looking forward to Thanksgiving this week—gathering with loved ones and enjoying some wonderful food, community, and fun! One of the rituals I savor is just before we sit down to eat, when we all gather around the table, standing in a circle holding hands, and each one of us goes around the room and names one thing for which we are grateful this year. Everyone participates, including the young ones who are just old enough to talk. I so treasure the moment of standing in that circle of love.
A friend of mine shared with me her daily ritual of thanksgiving. Every night she writes in her journal a list of five things for which she is grateful that particular day, five words or phrases of gratitude.
If you were to make a gratitude list for Thanksgiving, what are your top five? Here is my list of the top five things of gratitude this year: 1. Good health, 2. Loved ones and family, 3. My parents, 4. Gift of being full alive, and 5. Gift of perseverance through difficulty.
And here is a list of my top five quotes on gratitude (in no particular order):
1. “God gave you a gift of 86,400 seconds today. Have you used one to say ‘thank you’?” —William A. Ward
2. “Saying ‘thank you’ is more than good manners. It is good spirituality.”—Alfred Painter
3. “Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to charity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.”—Melody Beattie
4. “Gratitude is the best attitude.”—Author Unknown
5. “If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, ‘thank you,’ that would suffice.”—Meister Eckhart
Thank you for sharing the spiritual journey. I pray for each of you with a grateful heart! Happy Thanksgiving!
Denise Pyles, M.Div.