Let's Give Thanks

Whatever tomorrow "is," whatever your practices and rituals are for the holiday, whatever you consume, whatever you do, let's give thanks. I'll start with a key one for me, and then share some ideas and questions for you to explore your life with gratitude today, tomorrow and everyday following. 

I'm thankful for the people in my life at present (and even in my past). 
I won't give you the comprehensive list (unless you want me to), because it's LONG. I have friends and family that care about me. People that not only want me to be happy, but people who remind me to be my whole self. People who inspire me with their love, kindness, generosity and faithful presence. A wife/best friend who is my strongest supporter and my most profound inspiration. Brothers and sisters who hound my phone to talk to me (because I can be hard to get a hold of sometimes). Friends that in the midst of their own busy lives make time for deep conversation, for a shared project or just to be together. People in my neighborhood and faith communities Employers and coworkers who have opened doors and opened hearts. People that are not actively in my life now, but who had a profound impact in my life—they're with me in my heart. Thankful for people who even from a distance take time to hear my heart and share theirs. Thank YOU, for being in my life. Thank you for your encouragement, for the memories we share. So many people, so many blessings!

Here are some questions and ideas for your consideration and experimentation:
Questions: What are you giving thanks for this weekend? What about your life do you find yourself being routinely grateful for? How do you express your gratitude to yourself? To God? To others? 
What people in your life encourage and support you? 
What aspects of your place (neighborhood, community, dwelling, work, etc.) are exciting you right now?
In the midst of challenges in your life, what do you focus on? How do you give thanks?

Ideas and Exercises
  • Out of gratitude and appreciation for who you are, right now at this moment, reflect on who you are and be thankful. Acknowledge your strengths. Write out your focuses and attributes in an acrostic poem. Sit in silence with a smile. :) All kinds of ideas for that one, but just remember to be thankful for who YOU are!
  • Pick a person (or several people) in your life and show gratitude. Write a thank you note, take time to talk to or call them. Start a conversation with what you appreciate about them. Make something they will be thankful for. Make their day.
  • Reflect on your past, be thankful. Examine your present, be thankful. Imagine your future, be thankful. :)
  • First thing in the morning, focus on the images of people, places and things you are thankful for and meditate on them. Pray for them. Journal about them.  
I'd love to hear what you're thankful for, and your ideas for sharing in thankfulness with others. I'm still growing in this gratitude thing, and I'm thankful to have so much reason to practice. :) Happy Thanksgiving!

With gratitude,