Are we thankful for the right things?

"Be thankful in all circumstances..."

I have often seen in so many different places, so many different words with the same message, but do any of us really know what it means to be thankful? Are we grateful for the right things? And are we thankful in all circumstances, or just the ones where life seems like it is easy?

I can honestly say, that when I think about what I have deemed a good circumstance in my life, it is often followed up with "but then this happened and it all changed." Why though? Why do I allow myself to think that everything has to be good, in order for me to feel like it is something to be happy about? My husband has always told me that things could be so much worse, and he is right, life could be so much worse than what it is.

We have so much to thank God for, so why don't we? These thoughts come to mind, tonight while my husband and I aren't seeing eye to eye, that I am still so grateful to have him. I am so blessed in the fact that he is willing to work as hard as he does, he is willing to do everything in his power to make sure that his family is comfortable in every way. I am blessed to still have him here to disagree with, laugh with, make up with, and push on through life with.

I could go on and say, "well you have a roof over your head, food on the table, a warm bed, blah, blah, blah." But you already know that. You already know what you have, but are you truly thankful for it, or do you want more?

I remember one birthday, I ended up getting out of the vehicle because we were having an unnecessary argument (big shocker, I know!), and I decided that I wanted to walk instead of being there with him. I met this man, who was walking with his bike. He asked me why I was walking and would not leave my side, until he got me to the bus stop, which I did not know was his plan until after we had waked around for a bit. We were sitting on a bench, sipping on some gas station coffee and exchanged stories. When I told him it was my birthday, he gifted me with the only thing of value to him at that time, which was a very old brass bell. Now, I know that it sounds like one of the silliest things in the world, but that bell meant everything to him. He told me that it had belonged to his grandfather, who had horses and was in the Army. He wanted me to have it, so that I could never forget what I was going to learn that day.

Little did I know at that time, that bell would come to mean more to me than any other gift I received. While we were walking around, we passed by one of the camps, where the homeless lived. They took pride in the small possessions they had, they did everything they could to care for them, and they were grateful to have what they did. That man took the little bit of money he had left, put me on a bus to get home, and bid me a Happy Birthday. I tell you all of this, because that birthday was one of the most humbling experiences of my life and one I don't think I will ever forget. He was right when he said, that bell would remind me of what I learned that day. Every time I see that bell sitting on my dresser, I give it a little ring, say a prayer for that man, and remind myself to be thankful.

Be thankful, for that child that has you at the end of your rope, be thankful for the spouse that you may be disagreeing with, be thankful for the fight of life, but mostly be thankful for the lessons you have learned and the fact that you got the opportunity to learn them.

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