Gratitude – The Choice to Make this Thanksgiving

by Erin, The $5 Dinner Mom on November 25, 2010

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For the past several weeks, I have been going through Nancy Leigh DeMoss’ book, Choosing Gratitude, with a small group of ladies. I’ve always thought of myself as a grateful person, until I started reading this book.  I choose to see the blessings in my circumstances…but usually just in the “good” circumstances.

But what about the ugly circumstances in life. It’s a gazillion times more difficult to be grateful through the trials and troubles in life. My current “ugly” circumstance is Tyler and his weight gain troubles…How can I be grateful for the fact that he’s not growing or gaining weight!?! That just doesn’t seem like something to be grateful for.  But it depends on how you look at it.

Well, I can be grateful for how quickly we got in to see the dietician. And the feeding team. And the GI doctor. I can be grateful that we now know what is going on. (The sphincter between his esophagus and stomach does not close properly. Not much can be done for it. So we keep on the high calorie formula and foods.) I am grateful that we can afford to get him medical care. And that we can afford to get him some of the special needs foods and formula. And that I can stay home with him and make sure his nutritional needs are met.

If I’m honest with myself, I’m really not all that grateful for the overall situation. While I’m grateful, I’m still frustrated and discouraged that he’s not gaining, and that he’s not drinking much still, and that he only eats tiny bits at a time.

But.

But.

But.

This Thanksgiving, I choose gratitude. I choose to let go of the frustration. I choose to think positive and take every thought captive when I get discouraged. I choose to persevere and see the blessings in each day and each.

I’m not just going to share what I’m thankful for during our feast. I’m going to choose gratitude. I’m going to choose to be grateful for every situation in my life, seeing the blessings in not just the good, but in the bad and the ugly too.

Think about it for a second…what does it mean for you to choose gratitude. Go ahead, ponder it for a second.

I’ll leave you with this quote from Choosing Gratitude, before I get to the $5 Dinners PSA.

“Gratitude unleashes the freedom to live content in the moment, rather than being anxious about the future or regretting the past.”

Live in the moment. Be content. Choose gratitude. Find joy!

Will you be choosing gratitude with me this Thanksgiving?!?

And now for the PSA…

I’ll be off for the next few days…coming back with a bang on Monday.  I’ll be introducing The $5 Dinner Mom’s $20 Holiday Gift Guide, perfect for every chef in your life!  I’ll also have a new weekly meal plan and printable grocery list for you on Sunday afternoon.

AND….

A big announcement that you’re not going to want to miss on Monday…something about 12 Days of Christmas…and something you’re going to want to win!!!

Let’s just say I’ve been taken over by the spirit of giving this holiday season…

Happiest of Thanksgiving to each of you!

xoxo
Erin and the guys

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Kathy T November 25, 2010 at 6:51 am

Thank you for posting this, it was really a blessing this morning.

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Claire November 25, 2010 at 11:39 am

Our pastor just preached this last night. Being grateful for what we have and what we can do. Thank you for sharing with us. You are blessed.

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Cathy @ Chief Family Officer November 25, 2010 at 4:19 pm

My friend and I have talked about how you end up feeling grateful that things are not worse. When my son was hospitalized, I was so grateful that his condition was so much less serious than those of the other children in the same ward. My friend’s son is autistic, but she is grateful that at least he’s high-functioning. I pray that your son’s condition resolves as soon as possible – Happy Thanksgiving!

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Larissa November 25, 2010 at 6:49 pm

Great post! Our young son was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes mid October. We spent several days in our area’s Children’s Hospital learning all about the condition as well as the management of it. It was a shock and not something you would wish on any child or family but as you said, not grateful for the overall situation but grateful that things aren’t worse. We could have been there for something so much harder to treat and/or we could have lived in the era before Insulin was discovered.
Happy Thanksgiving to all of you.

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LisaE November 25, 2010 at 9:17 pm

Terrific post….the gratitude concept is something everyone should always remember and live by. Too many people complain about the little things in life-small issues that are really no big deal in the scheme of things and it is those people who always complain the loudest about the smallest of incidents.

If you took a group of people and had them write down their biggest problems in life ( TRUE ISSUES-NOT LITTLE ONES), and dropped those problems in a hat, had everyone pick one from that hat to trade and live with those problems…..very soon after reading other people’s problems you most likely will be wishing for your own back.

Be grateful for what you have as it can be taken away in a heartbeat.

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Stephanie November 27, 2010 at 9:27 am

I have to get this book!

Sorry to hear about your son, praying that things will get better for him soon!

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Debra November 29, 2010 at 2:04 pm

You are right! Gratitude is something people dont realize comes with good and bad reasons. You see, my motto in life is that “Everything happens for a reason”. We suffered a complete loss during Hurricane Ike in Texas in 2008 but I am grateful in a lot of different ways. We got our house when we were in our twentys, raised our children, had a great life, even paid off our mortgage early in 2008 when so many people were starting to struggle to keep their homes. We were grateful for all those reasons. Then months later we lost all of those thirty years of home and memories…..washed away with the storm surge. Devastated, we looked to the future and tried to see what was ahead. My loving husband granted my wish and rebuilt our home with improvements. You see, we are in our fifties now, and he made our home elderly friendly. We are again grateful for having our home and we will also build more memories to go with it. EVERYTHING happens for a reason! And there is ALWAYS something to be grateful for. Happy Holidays everyone.

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