If I want to become a grateful woman, I need to be a part of the process.
I don’t sit on the curb and wait for gratitude to stop by for his annual visit–Fall, usually–along with turkey and relatives. Nope. I need to get up and get going every day of the year. How so? I’m sedentary by nature. Mom’s fault, I’m sure. Why get up and move when there’s a good curb and a nice cup of tea at hand? Lethargic in my praise and thanksgiving, I forget my bounty.
I need to work on that.
How so? Practice.
I can ask God til the cows come home – we have cows in San Luis Obispo – I’m sure they come home eventually. I can ask, “Lord, make me a grateful woman” and trust Him to make it happen. But I have a part in that growing process; it’s called practice. Practice may involve some good self-talking-to:
Be grateful, Sue Moore Donaldson, for what you already have.
One day while feeling frustrated with the Man-in-Plaid – can’t remember why now–telling, but that’s another post. I can’t remember why I felt frustrated, but on that day, I knew I should call my friend Debbi. I didn’t really want to call my friend Debbi. I enjoyed my frustration too much. I knew what Debbi would say, and I didn’t want to hear it.
I called. I was right.
She said, “Sue, write down a list of 10 things about Mark you are thankful for.”
(I knew she was going to say that. So annoying.)
I hung up and made my list. I felt better around #6. I’m pretty sure I made it to #10. I have done this list more than once in 27 years of marriage. I recommend it. If you don’t want to hear it from me, you can call Debbi.
My Man-in-Plaid is always working on something. He’s had this shirt awhile. It shows. Wonder how grateful he’d be if it quietly disappeared?
Why do we need to practice gratefulness? Why do we need to be part of the process?
Gratefulness fosters contentment. In case you’re still sitting on that curb of doom and gloom, try listing your thankfuls. Listing jogs our memories—jogging is much better than sitting.
Thanking God for what I have already creates a grateful heart and makes our Father pleased as punch. (I’m grateful for punch, aren’t you? I think I’m on a roll.)
We have so much. We live in the land of plenty.
So, why don’t we give thanks (when we don’t?)
Because we focus more on what we don’t have–rather than on what we do.
Guilty as charged.
Here’s a free printable to help you cultivate a grateful heart.
Let all that I am praise the Lord;
may I never forget the good things He does for me. Psalm 103:2
It’s a forgetting thing. May I never forget the good things He does for me.
How do you keep from forgetting? What helps you practice gratitude? We’d all like to know. We’d be most grateful.
Stay tuned: The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pillows – sending gratfulness one pillow at a time – due to arrive before Thanksgiving. (I’m so thankful.)
A new friend, Glee Jasko, started her own method of keeping a grateful heart: Happy Sis quarterly magazine –a new topic for each quarter. She graciously invited me to share some words on Contentment in this quarter’s magazine. Follow her on twitter @happysismag
My article is in the current issue.