Reasons to Be Thankful and Why Everyone Should Have a Gratitude List

Thanksgiving…what a great time to count my blessings

I’m lying here in bed (my granddaughter curled up beside me) as some Disney show is blaring in front of me on the television. I drink my coffee, look outside, and smile. I have so much to be thankful for.

Today, I’m aware that life is better than I deserve, which is saying something these days. The daily news of the world being full of pain and suffering, hardship and turmoil, disappointment and regret. So, the fact that I can be thankful and mean it is, in its own way, a small miracle.

I have learned through the years there is a responsibility that comes with the privilege of life. That we are blessed to bless. Gifted to give. We are not lucky, fortunate, or merely disciplined; we are expected to do something with the grace we’ve been given.

When I was younger, I didn’t understand gratitude. I didn’t even try to understand what gratitude actually was. In a universe that seemed to hurt for no reason, giving thanks felt disingenuous. Living in a world where children die of hunger every day, it just didn’t make sense. But now after life’s trials, I understand. Being grateful is a choice.

Gratitude is now part of my natural disposition, so this took some time and effort to condense. It was a discipline to remind myself of the many reasons I have to be grateful. But it was an exercise well worth the discomfort.

Here’s my challenge to you: Take some time today, wherever you are and whatever you’re doing, to come up with a gratitude list. If it doesn’t come naturally, don’t let that stop you from still giving thanks. There is still much to be thankful for, if we only have eyes to see.

And in case you were wondering, here are my 26 reasons to give thanks today:

Simply waking up today means you have things to be thankful for.

I am thankful for my health, for being able to walk, run, and chew bubble gum and eat turkey dinners.

I am thankful for the team of doctors that removed my breast cancer and have been monitoring me ever since diagnosis.

I am especially thankful my partner in crime, my best friend, the love of my life, and Dish dryer, Numero Uno, Glen, who vowed to be my biggest fan on the day we were married and has never once let me down.

Two beautiful daughters God let me raise. Their wit and antics keep me on my toes.

I am thankful for my grandchildren who keep me young at heart.

I am thankful for the pain I have suffered. For without pain, it would be difficulty to appreciate life’s joys.

The generosity of the person in front of me at the grocery store let me go ahead in line because I >had only one item.

I am thankful for job and the gift of being able to write this blog — that it is both hard nd easy at the same time. Easy to do, hard to master. Always frustrating. Always rewarding.

When the sky is so blue and beautiful it nearly hurts my eyes.

Sunsets are a reminder that we should enjoy the simple things in life.

The moon and stars encourage us to dream.

I am extremely thankful for the online pink family and other readers who are supportive and making a difference in the world. You ladies and men inspire me.

Being able to worship whomever and however you want is something many people don’t ever experience.

If we never made mistakes, we wouldn’t learn much so it is one of those things we should be thankful for.

Without challenges in life, we wouldn’t be the people we are now.

I am thankful for laughter. For without laughter, the world would be a sad place.

Our veterans, many of whom died to defend that right. Our lives would likely be very different if we didn’t have protection from the armed forces.

Being able to express your thoughts and feelings freely should never be taken for granted.

Being able to have a say in the laws should never be taken for granted.

I am thankful for movies — for being able to turn part of my brain off and still be inspired.

I am thankful for social media, which, for all its drawbacks, makes it possible for me to keep in touch with friends I would not otherwise.

Although we often don’t think there’s enough of it, time is something we shouldn’t take for granted.

Thankfully, we grow smarter over time.

I am thankful for my readers, for without you, why would I have a reason to blog.

Lastly, and most importantly, I am thankful for Grace — for love that cannot be explained (only surrendered to), for a Creator that inspires creativity, for purpose and a hope that there is more to the story than we see.

If you read this blog, you have already given me a gift. Thank you.

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