We focus on giving thanks in November in the USA. I am sharing why I'm thankful.
I related to an acquaintance this week that I am a lady on extended time!!
There was a hold-up at the store where I was a grocery store cashier while I was in high school
and college. The security officer on my left was shot in the leg; the bullet ricocheted at my waist
level, police ballistics advised me later that day. He was about ten feet from me. The bullet lodged in the wall on the right, per their report.
When I the bandit confronted me immediately after the security officer was wounded, I prayed to God
and asked that my customer and I be spared. Memories surfaced of the saw-off shot gun that
did NOT go off when the trigger was pulled three times. The aggressor acknowledged that
the gun was not discharging. (Angels were indeed in position!) For the angel of the LORD is a guard; he surrounds and defends all who fear him, Psalm 34:7.
He ran away when there were no bullets discharged! Thanks flooded my mind and heart. I learned that day that a short prayer worked in an intense situation! I am always thankful for the extension on of 40 plus years on my life!! I am married, have a family and was able to help so many others during these 40 years. This blessing is impressed in my heart!! It could have been removed with the events of that day!
You may or may not have experienced a dramatic event as stated above, yet I want to encourage you to create your 2021-2002 gratitude list. Research by Robert Emmons, a scientific expert on gratitude - notes that gratitude has two key components: 1) "It's an affirmation of goodness and 2) We recognize that the sources of this goodness are outside of ourselves. We acknowledge other people - or even higher powers, if you're of a spiritual mindset- gave us many gifts, big and small to help us achieve the goodness in our lives."
Per Emmons, "Gratitude has a social dimension - relationship strengthening. It requires us to see how we've been supported and affirmed by other people." If you wish further information read:
(What is Gratitude?: https://greatergood.berkely.edu/topic/gratitude/definition#whypractice).
Consider sharing with the people who make a difference regularly in your life how you view their contributions. Note things that you appreciate: 1) family and friends, 2) housing, food, and clothing,
3) continual, easy breathing without COVID-19 issues, 4) your job, 5) brisk fall air, 6) completing a task or set of tasks as anticipated, 7) pets, 8) our ability to think, speak and plan, 9) God's protection every day of our lives and 10) God's every day sight, hearing and movement of our bodies. These are a few examples.
The list can be endless; discuss your thoughts with others. These are meant to jump start grateful feelings to improve the quality of your life as Researcher Emmons advises. The exchange will contribute to relationship strengthening as we mingle during Thanksgiving. Also, it is the time of year for reflection. Some fulfill holiday traditions; others create new ones. Whatever your stance is,
keep gratefulness at the forefront of your thinking as you finish the year and ongoing.
Know that God is and has been very good to us. Do thank Him for all that He has done and what He is
doing right now. Thankfulness is always in time. "Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus, I Thessalonians 5:18.
I wish you, your family and friends a safe, interactive time for Thanksgiving. Do take precautions as gathering occurs.
Call to Action:
1) Give God great praise for His blessings in your life. Exchange your thankful list with others to enhance the emotional bond with God as well as between or among those you care about. Give yourself time to embrace the graciousness that you have received from God.
2) Share a copy of my book, "Fully Persuaded Faith" as an opportunity to scribe what you appreciate about the person(s) value in your life: https://www.marilynnjames.com/.