Daily Thankfulness

by Cherry Pedrick, RN
Reprinted from Suite101.com, November 19, 2001, Revised

This Thursday is Thanksgiving here in the United States. Even in the midst of a war, we have a lot to be thankful for, as do so many in our world today.

I am thankful for freedom and all the benefits it brings. I just published my second book. I’m thankful it can be published freely, without government censorship.

I am thankful for my family, for the love we share. I know that some are mourning the loss of loved ones today. I remember those I’ve loved and lost over the years; my parents, in laws, a beloved aunt. Though I miss them and the pain remains, I am thankful I had them in my life and that God allowed the time we had.

I am thankful for my home, plentiful food and clothing, all the extra things I don’t need, but bring comfort. I’m thankful that freedom and peace are bringing these necessities and comforts to others around the world.

I am thankful for the peace I have through my faith in my loving and faithful God, and that I have the freedom to worship Him as I choose. I pray that the world will soon experience this freedom.

In the United States, we set aside a day every year to be thankful for all the abundance we enjoy. Many set aside a day each week to worship God and thank Him for all He provides. It revives us and renews our appreciation for life’s big and little pleasures. What if we set aside a few minutes each day to be quiet and thankful? I call this my daily quiet time. I pray, read my Bible, renew my strength, thank God for His blessings, and plan the rest of the day. For you, it might be a time to meditate, read inspirational literature or poetry, write in a journal, anything that is refreshes, revitalizes, nurtures, sustains, renews, or comforts.

For me, keeping a daily quiet time has been a challenging habit to develop. Like any habit, one must want to make a change. List the advantages of your new habit. When it seems burdensome, review these advantages. Start slow. If you set aside too much time, you may give up when it gets too challenging. Start with, maybe 10 minutes three to four times a week. When life interferes, and it will, and you go several days or a week without a quiet time, stop, reassess your needs, and recommit to this gift to yourself. On a regular basis, perhaps once a month, revisit the advantages of your new habit. You’ll probably see many more advantages.

Finally, reward yourself with a new journal, an inspirational book, a bookmark, or an extra latte. The spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical benefits may be enough, but I think a tangible reward for building a good habit is always helpful.

Be sure to check out The Habit Change Workbook:
How to Break Bad Habits and Form Good Ones