Gratitude. Being grateful. Being thankful. Appreciating the beauty in the smallest of things. The rays of the sun shining through the windows signalling a new day. Simple conversations between old and new friends. The gentle breeze to cool you down in the heat. The blueness of the sky and green on the trees. How often do we take a moment to be aware of these things?
Our society these days is all about constantly being on the move. Constant worry of lists that need to be done, deadlines that need to be met. Sleepless nights where one’s number one enemy is time. Time to get things done. Time to relax. Time to spend with loved ones. It seems that we are always racing against time. When we don’t meet those deadlines, when our plans fall through, when everything seems to spin out of control, what is our first reaction? I personally become more anxious, agitated and selfish. I become less patient and have the mind set of “If they only knew what I was going through” or “If they only knew what a bad week or day I have been having.” I fall into this trap of self-pity.
In this trap, I become blind to what is in front of me. I become blind to the world around me. I become blind to the fact that there are people like me, or are in more difficult circumstances who are also suffering and struggling to get by. But what if amidst my own pain, my own struggles, I step out of self-pity and take a minute or two to really see what is around me or think back to all the great things I have? What if instead of self-pity we had a heart and mind of gratitude? Because sometimes we just need that that reminder, that moment to have a heart and mind of gratitude. To help us realize that even in the craziness of life, we are still here. Breathing. We are still here because we have a purpose. A mark that is to be made on this world.
May we take that time today, to have the courage to just stop and take a deep breath and be aware with a heart of gratitude. And may that moment help us, strengthen us, encourage us to keep moving forward.