More than one person has observed that we have become a nation of whiners. But let's not forget that America is also the only large nation on earth that sets aside an entire day for the giving of thanks.
It is a fitting move for a people who value "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness". Dennis Prager reminds us that there is no possibility for true happiness without gratitude. That's why the entitled are never happy, he says. If they are blessed, they are only getting what they suppose they deserve. But the man, woman or child who understands that anything good they have in life is a blessing instead of what is owed them has the opportunity to feel that blessing deep within and to lift up their head and say "thank you" -- to God, to loved ones, to anyone who has so endowed them.
I have been working on a new little spiritual exercise lately -- to stop and take a moment in my day to give thanks for everything I see around me. Right now it would be: "Thank You, Lord, for a beautiful place to spend Thanksgiving, for Robin in the other room alive, well and thriving, for my teenaged son, Matthew who is almost as tall as me, bright, kind and mature. Thank you for JeanneAnn and her incredible engagement with life -- she wants to do EVERYTHING and she keeps me moving. Thanks for the food I can see from my chair -- pies, bananas, blessings abundant and for the excitement I feel knowing that Andrew and Britt and Chris and Colleen and Charlie and Annabel and others are going to fill up the next couple days with life and love.
Thank You for the incredible sight of sun glancing off ocean water while darker clouds cast their shadows. Thank You for the opportunity to communicate these thoughts, these sights, these feelings. Thank You for it all".
Happy Thanksgiving! Is there any other kind?