Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Gratitude for my blessings
It is easy to think of the difficulties, and easy to get excited about the big things. But I want to be more thankful for the everyday, little things that I am blessed with. I am not so good at taking the time to put my thoughts on gratitude into words.
Sometimes, I think that we need to take a little extra time to be thankful. Don't ask for anything. Don't want anything in return. Just be thankful for your blessings. What are you thankful for? Who are you thankful for? What do you do to show it? I find that it is easy to feel thankful when something is a pleasure, but it is harder when you can't see the outcome.
Charles Plumb was a navy jet pilot. On his seventy-sixth combat mission, he was shot down and parachuted into enemy territory. He was captured and spent six years in prison. He survived and now lectures on the lessons he learned from his experiences.
One day, a man in approached Plumb and his wife in a restaurant, and said, "Are you Plumb the navy pilot?"
"Yes, how did you know?" asked Plumb.
"I packed your parachute," the man replied.
Plumb was amazed - and grateful: "If the chute you packed hadn't worked I wouldn't be here today..."
Plumb refers to this in his lectures: his realisation that the anonymous sailors who packed the parachutes held the pilots' lives in their hands, and yet the pilots never gave these sailors a second thought; never even said hello, let alone said thanks.
Now Plumb asks his audiences, "Who packs your parachutes?..... Who helps you through your life?.... Physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually?....... Think about who helps you; recognise them and say thanks."
The challenge today is simply to figure out the people in your life who help you out in both the big and little things. Send them a note, email, twitter, facebook or even old-fashioned letter of thanks. Let them get the warm fuzzy feeling that we all get when we experience a pleasant, unexpected surprise.
Remember today the people who "pack your parachute".