It's been a really shitty month. There, I've said it. I'm not willing to pretend it hasn't been awful or just look the other way, suck it up, and "get over it". It's devastating when someone who was a part of your family at one time is kidnapped and murdered. It's gut wrenching when someone you admired and who mentored you falls ill and dies unexpectedly. It's frustrating when your health insurance premium hits a level you can no longer afford so you opt to go without even though you'll have to pay a fine for not having it. It's heartbreaking when your beloved pet's death two months ago still brings you to tears and envelopes you in loneliness. It's shitty when a political election goes in a direction you never imagined it could go and the world seems to have turned upside down, inside out, and too many people you love are living in deep genuine fear. Yeah, it's been a really shitty month. And in some ways I think that makes it more important than ever to be grateful!
It's easy to be grateful when things are good: money is flowing, health is glowing, and peace & love are the common mantra. It's not easy to feel and be grateful when things are not so good. But I'm willing to choose gratitude. I'm choosing to be grateful even when it's difficult. It's a coping strategy, really. Being grateful changes the brain, the body, and the spirit. It's life-giving! I have so much to be grateful for and while I will not ignore life's difficulties I also will not forgo gratitude. I hope you can muster the inspiration and courage to be grateful in your difficult times. Maybe one of my favorite grateful videos will inspire. The first is a contemporary song featuring rapper Nimo, and the second is based on a beautiful children's book and features Art Garfunkel.
Here's to being grateful...even when it's difficult.
I had hoped to post once a week, and did for a short time. Unfortunately, my doctorate research and other obligations have taken priority over the blog. BUT, I will return soon! Some postings may be articles I've written for publication, messages I've delivered in congregational settings, or excerpts from papers written in my doctoral classes.