The Tricky Turkey Holiday

Well, here in Canada we just survived another Thanksgiving weekend. For those of you in the USA, you’re going to have to wait a while to be thankful.

And that’s the point of our talk today.

The tricky thing about having a holiday where we are supposed to be thankful is that it somehow frees us to be ungrateful for the rest of the year. After all, complaining is the real national pastime – no matter which country you call home.

When gratitude becomes a way of life, rather than a reason for a fall family gathering, it revolutionizes how we think and live.

Canadian actor, Will Arnett, connects the dots between gratitude and happiness.

“I am happy because I’m grateful. I choose to be grateful. That gratitude allows me to be happy.”

And American actress, Doris Day, explains the truth about gratitude in a direct style.

“Gratitude is riches. Complain is poverty.”

I’m not writing today to tell you, “It’s Thanksgiving. You BETTER BE thankful!”

That’s WAY to simplistic.

Life is hard. People are difficult. Employers are demanding. Pain is real.

So what is the lesson for today?

There is an unseen link between the choice of gratitude and happiness.

Being consciously thankful for the good that is in our lives has a direct impact on our mind, our outlook, and our day.

You see, happiness is a choice. But to choose happiness is to make dozens of other strategic choices that mold our happiness in the day to day.

One of those choices is gratitude.

I’m not talking about a false thankfulness that divorces us from reality. All of life isn’t rosy. As I said, there are difficult things that happen to us in this life. It’s part of living in a world that is decaying around us. We don’t escape the impact of that downward spiral that grips all of creation.

However, the choice to be grateful finds the glimmer of light sent by the Creator in our darkness to show us that He hasn’t abandoned us, that he’s on our side, and that we will make it through the trial.

We can be happy – not because we try to muster up happiness by talking ourselves into it – but rather, because we choose to be thankful for the good we do have and enjoy.

One last note about thankfulness. If you are going to be a thankful person, you have to have someone to be thankful to. After all, you can’t thank yourself for the warmth of the sun, for the smile of a child, or for the kind word of a stranger. Either there is some person who has been good to you that deserves your gratitude, or you have God in heaven to thank. Either way, thankfulness pushes us to acknowledge that someone else cares about us – and that’s another reason to be happy.

Until next time, have a happy day.

Before the box