JOtL Lite: Day Three

When it comes to good health, water is a no-brainer. We all know the benefits of staying hydrated. But why should we indulge in the second part of our JOtL Lite challenge? What’s so great about thankfulness?

Over the last few weeks, I’ve found that thankfulness is the best kind of medicine.

It’s easy in our modern age to view our lives in terms of what we don’t have. Consumerism is built on the premise that we are without something that could bring us happiness. Every advertisement single-mindedly strives to convince us that if we just had a little more, if we weren’t lacking in this or that one area, we would be complete. Standing in a mall or browsing online shops is the easiest way to discover what we don’t have, and the realization only serves to awaken within us a desire to accumulate, to consume. We can never have enough when our focus is on the void.

But thankfulness swings the camera around and gives us the ability to examine life from a different angle altogether. One minute I may feel like less of a person for owning only three pairs of shoes – but the next I can feel wealthy knowing that I still own three more pairs than a significant portion of the world’s population. Eating at home because I can’t afford to eat out may feel like a drag until I open my pantry to discover more food than some people have ever seen in one place.

As you write your three things to be thankful for, allow your perspective to shift. Obviously we don’t want to adopt guilt or shame, but a more accurate view of our blessings can definitely dull the pain of consumerism’s lies. We are complete. We have air, food, and shelter. The rest is sundry.

What have you discovered about yourself or your life as you record your blessings?

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3 thoughts on “JOtL Lite: Day Three

  1. Personally, I have found myself being grateful not for the tangible “things” in my life; rather, I have gravitated more towards the intangible items that can’t be purchased with money. My sense of adventure, my imagination, my family, my ability to spend time with close friends and family in many different and unique ways. As I finish writing this, I will be heading out the door to take my son to a baseball game 🙂

  2. Dave probably said it better than I can. By getting rid of nearly all my possessions I have found time for the things I am passionate about. Family, health, work that matters and makes a difference and that gives me a sense of accomplishment that a job for money could never give me.

  3. I’ve found in the last few years that the thankfulness habit — last thing at night, first thing in the morning — helps me peacefully wind down one day and charge up for the next. I agree with the first 2 comments, the “things” I’m thankful for aren’t really things at all, but tasks accomplished, blessings given and received, opportunities received, etc. (and, of course, I’m thankful when I find homes for our books, or find a creative way to donate something!)

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