I’m not even sure why this topic came up, as hubby and I splurged on soup and salad at Panera Bread last night….. but he told me about a guy that used to work for him when we lived in another state, and he said that at least once a week, this employee would thank him for his job. This man also shared that in his opinion, the greatest sin in this world was ungratefulness. While I understand that we are not supposed to rank sins, the more we processed this opinion, the more sense it made.
Doing unexpected things for others is something I enjoy. From letting someone go in front of you in line at the store to surprising a friend with a mid-afternoon iced tea at work, that single moment of “you did this for me?” is a little high. Perhaps I am shining the light on the fact that I am a selfish giver? That is not my intention. My purpose is for that person to be reminded that they matter.
But is it harder to give when it is expected? Is it even a gift when it’s not from your heart? As we come into this season of Thanksgiving, are we pausing to be thankful? Are we making our list and checking it twice out of obligation and tradition?
I want to strive to be more grateful for the little things and the big things. I am going to give from my heart and hope it is understood. I am going to attempt to smile when I’m on the phone so that it will be “heard” on the other end of the line. (possible exception would be the insurance adjuster from my summer car accident! ha!) I am going to put my smart phone aside when I am with others and be in the moment. How can future generations teach kindness and gratefulness and attentiveness, if they do not know it?
May we all be grateful. Not just in November, but every day. May we recognize reminders of our blessings. The sun in the winter, the diamonds in the snow, the giggle of a baby, the warm soup on the stove, an old photograph. You will know. And you will smile.