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The Gift of Gratitude

We give thanks to you, O God, we give thanks, for your Name is near; men tell of your wonderful deeds. Ps. 75:1, NIV.

My mother had the gift of gratitude, and that impressed me, even when I was small. In all situations, even the most difficult, she found reasons to thank the Lord. Today, at 78 years of age, she still dedicates a good part of her time to prayer and gratitude.

 I’ve known many grateful people, and also many whose main intention was to convince those who would listen that everything that happened to them was horrible and without solution. Never did they take into account the numerous blessings received. Unfortunately, ungrateful people only appreciate their blessings when they lose them. But then they usually put blame on others for their own irresponsibility and are never happy.

In self-help recovery groups for addictions, it is recommended that you begin the day listing reasons for gratitude: life, sight, health, peace, liberty, daily bread, work, family, and friends. It has been proven that the grateful person can adjust herself better to the frustration that privation and addiction may cause. Additionally, grateful people develop stronger family ties, are more productive, suffer fewer illnesses, less depression, and overcome losses more quickly.

On the other hand, counting our blessings also makes us consider the unfavorable situation of less fortunate fellow human beings and stimulates our solidarity and compassion.

There are various forms of gratitude, but the most important is the heart that is grateful to the Lord. As today’s verse states, His works speak of His wonderful deeds.

If you cultivate a spirit of gratitude you will note an immediate improvement in all areas of your life, especially the spiritual area. You will realize that you have much more than you thought, more joy and creativity. A well-known Christian writer recommends making a written record of these blessings. Then, when things don’t go well, you will have accumulated experiences that will help you overcome adversity. A friend of mine, a Holocaust survivor, say, “One must accept life as it is and be grateful for the good things one has.”

Tonight, go over your day and once again be thankful for what you have received. In this manner you will also declare how wonderful His name is.

María Susana Mistretta de Golubizky

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