This fall season in Ontario has been particularly colourful and beautiful. I don’t know the science behind it, but my eyes tell me that it is the case. With such a panorama of oranges, yellows, and reds on the horizon it isn’t too hard to be grateful.
With this in mind allow me a few words on the discipline of giving thanks:
Gratitude is a belief and practice which undoes the negative impact that complaining has on the human spirit. Gratitude can still come from one who understands that life is not always fair. As Rahner muses, this is “our one chance to be a Christian,” so let us engage our lives with buoyant and grateful hearts. I appreciate the encouraging words from Georgia O’Keefe, who knew much resistance as a female painter in a misogynistic artistic culture, as she advised, “Whether you succeed or not is irrelevant, there is no such thing. Making your unknown known is the important thing…and keeping the unknown always beyond.” Such a stick-to-itiveness flows well from the discipline of gratitude and is a keen support for the person who desires to walk in the ways of wisdom and fruitfulness. (Davey, The Passionate Bride)
Making your unknown known and doing so in a spirit of gratitude. Now that would be a breath of fresh air! Imagine a world where we were all pulling for each other with such uncompetitive spirits! As my niece Valerie Ransom muses in her song Jealousy, “Break me off a piece of that!”
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Gratitude can encompass many things. Oddly enough this week I thought about how grateful I was to have all of my five senses working properly for me. Things we often take for granted and shouldn't! Gratitude for the simplicity of a bird' chirping and the joy that brings, the sun shining and soft breezes, grateful for all that God provides.