In the November 19 issue of The Valley Catholic I wrote about the challenges I faced when trying to write about “What Gratitude Means to Me.” I asked for reader’s input, and people responded.
Below are some examples I received. I am only printing their first names for confidentiality.
From Jesse: “Grateful to me… In order to know what one is grateful for is to first minimize the carnal and maximize the spiritual traits each human possesses.
“For example, I don’t own a smart phone, or have I ever texted. I’d rather make eye contact with a person and nod my head or verbally greet, ‘Hi.’”
“I am grateful for who were my father and mother and who were my four grandparents whom I had the privilege of meeting. I miss all their voices and cooking too!
“Thanks be to God that I was granted life to see His Creation. I am most grateful for that gift.”
Kevin said: “To me, gratitude is a mindset. It is a way of living. And it is the lens through which we are invited to see the world. Gratitude makes a difference!”
William spoke of gratitude: “Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it. Why would we ever do this? And yet, this is often what we do with our feelings of gratitude. It is SO easy to take people, experiences, opportunities, and possessions for granted. Gratitude requires our attention, our focus.”
Jean said: “I’m grateful for the wonderful people that surround me, and the Hope they give the future of our lives and faith in God.
On this past Sunday I saw a man quickly pass his child to a woman behind him (he seemed to know her, as their respective spouses were in the choir together) and run to the aid of an older gentleman who seemed to be having a health-related event (I don’t know what was happening to the man, but he needed help).
It was all so quick, that it made me stop and appreciate the quick aid he gave this man. It could have been me, or someone I knew and loved.”
From Kristi: “For me, gratitude means waking up each day and thanking God for giving me another day to serve him in whatever way he wishes, being mesmerized by a beautiful sunrise/sunset, the moon and stars at night, the beauty that surrounds us each day. Gratitude means enjoying a cup of coffee in the morning or simple conversation with a longtime friend, laughter with family/friends that perhaps brings you to tears, simply being grateful for each moment the Lord invites us to as this present moment is all we have…”
Thank you to all who responded or took the time to read my column and give thought to this topic.
I have learned gratitude is an ever changing, ever growing quest in life.
Wishing everyone a joy filled season of Christmas and Advent. And here’s to a healthy and Happy New Year.