What does it mean to be grateful? Certainly, it’s about good manners and following the precepts of our faith, but I think it goes further, deeper, than that.
As we touched on last week where we recognized that people we didn’t know, and will probably never know, have helped us. And we recognized that there were–and are–people who help us and we don’t even know it; we go blithely along in our lives and don’t realize the ways we’ve been helped and even rescued–saved from heartache and disaster.
We’ll never be able to pay this back.
Even so, what are we going to do about it?
I suggest that we develop a permanently grateful heart and a thankful spirit especially when we think we have nothing to be thankful for. At these times it’s my hope that we are grateful anyway because of all the “good stuff ” we are so blindly unaware of.
And I hope we remember to pass this along to others in the form of not only reaching out a helping hand but also of not being so quick to judge, giving others the benefit of the doubt, and extending mercy and grace to others –especially when they don’t really deserve it.
I think there’s an old-fashioned term for this: humility.
Humility isn’t thinking of ourselves as worms or doormats and thinking that we only deserve the leftovers and crumbs.
No. Not at all.
Humility is realizing that no matter what our color, belief, size, gender, age…we’re all the same. We all want a better life for ourselves and our loved ones, and we all want to live in peace. Each of us wants our lives to matter–we want to make a difference, even if it’s in only our little corner of the world.
And, at one time or another, we’ve all made mistakes and we’ve all been jerks. Humility is realizing that no one’s perfect and we’re probably the ones leading the band on this one!
But wait a minute. We’re talking about gratitude…what does humility have to do with gratitude and thankfulness?
Humility has its roots in the gratitude we have for the unknown people who helped us either by pushing us forward or by protecting us from difficulties.
Your Friend and Pep Pal,