Friday, November 9, 2012

Gratitude amid life's challenges

Yesterday I talked about enchantment and delight. The more I think about that, the more I realize I might capture more of those feelings if I notice little things more. I have gotten so caught up in the busyness trap that seems to snare us these days. In doing so, I miss lots of little things. I forget to live in the moment—even though I want to do more of that. I want to feel grateful for small things, too.

I like what one mature gentleman is quoted as saying in Linda Douty's book How Did I Get to Be 70 When I'm 35 Inside? He says, "If I'm going to delight in the details, I must feed that part of me that experiences those feelings, like seeing with the eyes of my heart. Every night I try to fall asleep with good thoughts, replaying the day to remember four or five instances of simple joy."

What a great recipe for delighting in details—and what a great way to fall asleep each night! It doesn't mean denying that which challenges or hurts me. But it means changing my perspective. Douty quotes yet another person, "Then I made the distinction between being thankful in all things rather than for all things. It was possible to feel the pain of whatever was going on, to affirm that 'it is as it is,' then grab a grateful thought—maybe a tiny silver thread of hope—and affirm that also, even if it's saying, 'I'm grateful I made it through this dismal day.'"

Gratitude is possible even amid challenges and pain. Enchantment and delight can't be far behind!

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