We are approaching the anniversary date of the wildfire that took our home and belongings. I get a bit nostalgic and even triggered this time of the year — especially after hearing about the horrendous fires in Hawaii. How did we make it through that challenging time in our lives? By maintaining a state of glorious gratitude!
If you are challenged in finding gratitude, let me encourage you to let go of “lack” when you pray. See and feel everything around you as a gift and embody gratitude for your life. Be thankful for every condition of life, as it is designed and created to present the perfect opportunity to express perfection as the unique being you are.
In maintaining gratitude, we recognize the abundance, acknowledge it, and openly appreciate it by giving praise and thanks. Even challenges and heartache (like a devastating fire) bring opportunities for blessings. Gratitude is the spiritual practice of taking nothing for granted but learning to live and enjoy the present moment!
There are three components to maintaining a state of glorious gratitude: recognition, acknowledgment, and appreciation.
- I recognize that I have already received something amazing: the gift of life and the presence of spiritual energy. Gratitude changes us — our thoughts, our feelings, and our perception of the world.
- I acknowledge my good. We can physically feel the difference when we move from negativity to gratitude. Try it and notice the physical and mental change it brings about.
- I appreciate the simple things. For instance, I recognize, acknowledge, and appreciate the amazing gift of a new home. I can express gratitude for all our belonging: furniture, dishes, appliances, clothes, bedding. I am grateful for all of it because it is what we have to make our lives easier. After losing it all, these items become blessings to be thankful for.
By deliberately experiencing gratitude for what I want, I create greater happiness within and around myself. I begin to see all the blessings I am already experiencing and accept what I receive from life and everything in it as a gift. I end my day each night with a prayer of gratitude for all the blessings I received that day. Not only does this help me sleep better, but it also releases any anxious thoughts that would promote unpleasant dreams. For someone prone to nightmares, this is a perfect antidote to restful sleep without pills! Gratitude brings us into a state of wonder. Gratitude brings us into communion with the Divine.
As a gratitude practice becomes a way of being, I can truthfully say, “I AM gratitude.” And then engage in daily practice, starting with the words, “I am happy and grateful for…(fill in the blank).