Lord, You know how I like to write first thing in the morning. The past couple of days, though, I have been either out of the house early or been interrupted, so I had to get quiet at night instead. What I like best is having my longer quiet at the page, in my journal, in the morning, and then writing out my gratitude list at night. Journaling in the morning helps me start the day calm and centered; gratitude at night helps me reflect on all that went right during the day.
So why don’t you journal your gratitudes here, now?
Oh, well, I could. Sure. So today I am grateful for the practice of gratitude, period. I am so grateful for my friend Karen who recommended the practice all those years ago.
And why was that so important?
I was in a mess. I was hurting and grieving a loss, and she wisely said, you already know everything that is wrong in your life right now. The practice of a gratitude list will change your focus to the smallest of blessings that are still present. She challenged me to write ten things every single day, ten different things. She warned me I would find it hard at first, but if I persisted, the practice would change my life.
And why do you think it did change your life?
Honestly, Lord, I started looking for things to be grateful for. I knew that list was coming at bedtime! I started being alert for items to put down. It started as a challenge and became sheer joy. Some days I had so many things to list, ten wasn’t nearly enough. That practice reawakened me especially to how much nature was all around me, and how much I loved it. I’d become numb, blind, deaf in my grief. Gratitude was like springtime–it brought so much forth that had been sleeping and waiting.
So what else are you grateful for today?
Well, I am grateful for our new gallery space, and for our landlords that are working so hard to make it possible.
I am grateful for the warmer weather as I look back a week and edit images from our second snowfall; they are beautiful but they look cold!
I am grateful that I now have super warm gloves and coat and boots, so the next time it snows, I will be much cozier.
I am grateful to have seen a beautiful Westie in Home Depot, and that the owner let me squat down for her wags and kisses. I miss Mikey terribly and seeing this affectionate Westie didn’t make me sad, it made me happy.
I am grateful for a yummy lunch out with Pete, like a date!
I am grateful that this new project is giving him so much joy. He lights up when he has the chance to design something. It feels so good to see him happy.
I am grateful for all the heart shells I found yesterday.
I am grateful for all the support I have from friends and staff–not just for work stuff, for life stuff. You told me years ago that I would have help, and now I do. I am so, so grateful for my tribe. Thank You.
Oh, I am grateful for a new lyric! You know how I love to write. Anytime there is a new song, it is a favorite. So I love having time here in the winter to work on music a little.
Right now, this second, I can hear the tv in the living room. But I feel surrounded by Quiet. The quiet I feel in the morning with You. It is the same peaceful sense, not at all empty, very full. Full of Peace. Full of Your Presence. Is there something You want to say?
I Am Grateful for you. I Am grateful for your vulnerability, the same vulnerability that just brought those tears to your eyes–the vulnerability you sometimes see as a weakness, I see as one of your greatest strengths. I Am Grateful you are so sensitive to My Presence. People say, try harder. I say to you, try easier. Gratitude is an easy way to peace, to calm, to assurance. You don’t have to try so hard. You are here. You are present, present to me, and I Am present to you. And that is more than enough.