Somedays I’m overwhelmed by the financial requests for support from many organizations working to improve life – human life and animal life and plant life.
Doctors Without Borders, W. Berks Free Medical Clinic, Opportunity House, Family Promise, Food Pantry, School Backpacks, Ambulance Association, Lutheran Disaster and World Hunger and Immigration, GRIP (Greater Reading Immigration Project), Red Cross, Bread for the World, Sandy Hook Promise, Sierra Club, Arbor Foundation, Special Olympics, Earthjustice, Wilderness Society, Environmental Defense Fund.... Endless are the requests!
Viewing the wonders of nature can benefit our spirits. I’m also aware that appreciation, gratefulness/gratitude and generosity refresh our spirit too. “Grace and gratitude belong together like heaven and earth. Grace evokes gratitude like the voice an echo. Gratitude follows grace like thunder lightning.” – Karl Barth. Says researcher Paul Mills, “it seems that a more grateful heart is indeed a more healthy heart.” Elie Wiesel observed: “People can almost be defined by their attitude toward gratitude.”
Everyday there are reasons not to feel grateful and not to practice gratitude. Terrible, distressing, painful, and awful things occur all the time. It can become easy to choose ingratitude. Yet, there is gratitude to be found should we open our eyes and hearts to see all that surrounds us. “Gratitude” someone has noted, “amplifies goodness, rescues us from negative emotions, and connects us to others in meaningful ways.”
Gratitude for the many working to improve and rescue life. Gratitude for the lovely hanging baskets across the street from St. John. Gratitude for the opportunity to sit on a bench and read and enjoy the surroundings. Gratitude for those who pray for us. Gratitude ... a needed and powerful emotion touching us.
May God’s abounding love enrich you daily. Pastor Wayne