Wednesday, February 20, 2013

They've Got Cookies in There - The Power of Gratitude

I live in Columbus and work Downtown at Franklin University. The other day I was taking a cold walk to clear my mind and get a little exercise. I happened to be passing by a church that regularly hands out food to people in need, and I was walking by the church just as a beautiful woman came out of the large church doors, carrying bags of food. She had tears in her eyes as she looked at me and said, "You better hurry, they have cookies in there!"

Here was a woman who was so grateful to receive cookies with her gift of food. I don't know the woman's situation - perhaps she had small children who would be delighted to eat the cookies - whatever the case, this brief experience made me instantly grateful for all of the great blessings and opportunities I enjoy.

The Power of Gratitude
Gratitude empowers. It gives us a sense of perspective and helps us focus on the good and the positive in life.When we feel or express ingratitude, we often distort what is important. Complaining about work issues obscures the blessing of having a job. Complaining about a spouse's minor faults does not acknowledge the wonderful things the spouse does. But focusing on what we are blessed to have instead of what is wrong brings a fulfilling sense of happiness and success.

I read one time about a man who was ardently complaining about a new workout plan to his brother. He felt like he could never accomplish what he wanted to do and felt as if he would never reach his goals. As he talked, he realized that he was complaining to his brother who had been paralyzed and had lost all use of his body. By feeling gratitude for his blessings and love for his brother, he was empowered to accomplish his fitness goals with renewed sense of purpose.

Gratitude empowers because it gives a truthful perspective and focuses on the positive.

So, what are you grateful for?


J. Clark said...

I believe you just experienced one of what Wordsworth would call your "spots of time."

A very special thing. They are hard to explain, but you have done a wonderful job. Thank you for sharing this personal story that has caused you to think and grow.



joel gardner said...

Sure thing, JCLARK. I always love when these little moments come.