With Thanksgiving just around the corner I am reminded of a situation I encountered several years ago. I was sitting outside a medical building waiting for my wife and daughter to finish an appointment at the pediatrician’s office. As I waited, I saw a cute boy around four years old on crutches exiting the building with his mother. They walked to their car and the mother opened the back door for the boy to climb in. As he was getting situated, he fell to the floorboard of the car, but he quickly picked himself up and got back into his seat. As I watched this entire situation unfold, I suddenly became so thankful of the simple, everyday things we take for granted. You see, the boy was hobbling on crutches not because he had a cast, but because he didn’t have a right leg. Too many times it is easy to focus on the negatives and not the positives. When you compare your difficulties to what others are going through, you suddenly realize how fortunate you are. I thought for sure when the mother and son got to the car, she would help him get in. No way! He wasn’t going to let a minor setback in life slow him down. He did it on his own.
How many times in life do we let a small headache, lack of sleep or a difficult situation ruin our day? The next time you’re having a “bad day,” bend one leg behind you, wrap it several times with duct tape and leave it that way for 24 hours. There’s no doubt that would help each of us keep things in perspective and remind us of how thankful we all should truly be.
Thanksgiving (or celebrating with thankfulness) isn’t something the Pilgrims invented. It has been a part of the world from the very beginning. Let’s take a look at a couple attributes of a THANKFUL person.
The THANKFUL person is grateful for what they have, not bitter about what they don’t have. They try to look for the good in every situation. Have you ever been around that kind of person?
- It’s raining: “Oh, good! This is going to make the flowers grow!”
- They have a flat tire: “Thank God it happened on this residential street and not the freeway!”
They are so positive! How many of you could use a shot of this in your life! The THANKFUL person counts every day as a blessing regardless of the circumstances. They are not moved by what they see. How can they be thankful even when things go wrong? Because they don’t live based upon circumstances, but based upon their Faith in the future and the promises they believe in.
The questions for all of us this Thanksgiving are pretty simple… What kind of person are you? What kind of person do you want to be? Do you need to make an adjustment? This month I have a Thanksgiving homework project for you to do. Before midnight on Thanksgiving Day, I want you to thank every family member and close personal friend for something they have done for you over the past year. You’ll be amazed at what this does for your relationships!