December 30, 2017 – Gratitude Makes Sense Of Our Past, Brings Peace For Today, And Creates Vision For Tomorrow
By Gbenga Adebambo
IT IS ONLY A GREAT FOOL THAT WILL NOT BE GRATEFUL!
“When you take things for granted, the things you are granted, get taken”-Anonymous
There is a hymn song that formed my early childhood and in no time became my favorite:
“When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed”.
When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.
Count your blessings, name them one by one;
Count your blessings, see what God hath done;
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.
It is only a great fool that will not be grateful! I believe strongly that the best way to end the year and start another will definitely be with gratitude. Instead of complaining about the things we were unable to achieve, let us count our numerous blessings.
When you truly begin to count your blessings, you will lose all your complaints! Abu Bakr said, “He who avoids complaint invites happiness”.
If you want to evaluate a man’s mental state, look at his attitude of gratitude. A man that is mentally healthy believes strongly that there is always something to be thankful for. Hal Elrod said, “Love the life you have while you create the life of your dreams”.
It is not happy people who are thankful; it is thankful people who are happy! Gratitude is an essential component in living a fulfilling and abundant life, and aligning yourself to receive all the good the universe has to offer.
Naomi Williams said, “It is impossible to feel grateful and depressed in the same moment.” We must look for platforms to appreciate people that have contributed immensely to our live
s. William Arthur Ward said, “Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.” Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with the heart of gratitude.
Gratitude is perhaps the greatest form of attitude. Cicero said, “Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all others”. Gratitude will always turn what you have into enough! There is a direct correlation between gratitude and abundance.
When we are grateful, we will continually attract things to be grateful for. Michael Bernard said, “Nothing new can come into your life unless you are grateful for what you already have”.
Doris Day said, “Gratitude is riches. Complaint is poverty”. Gratitude is the greatest multiplier! I have observed that people that complain don’t always reach their destinations in life! Like the biblical story of the Israelites with uncontrollable penchant for complaining in the wilderness. It is sympathetic to know that virtually all of them didn’t reach the promise land.
Gratitude helps us to see what is there instead of what isn’t. We will always have reasons to complain but a wise man sees more reasons not to. Charles Spurgeon said, “It is not how much we have, but how much we enjoy, that makes happiness”.
Melody Beattie said, “Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow”. According to Robert A. Emmons, Ph.D., the world’s leading scientific expert on gratitude with ten years of research on gratitude, he stated that : “Pеорlе whо рrасtiсе grаtitudе tend to bе more сrеаtivе, bоunсе back mоrе quiсklу frоm adversity, have a ѕtrоngеr immunе system. Practicing grаtitudе саn increase hаррinеѕѕ lеvеlѕ by аrоund 25%”.
Steven Furtick said, “Gratitude begins where my sense of entitlement ends.” There is a fascinating story I will like to share on the power of gratitude. There was a woman in a Lebanese-owned fish industry in Lagos, Nigeria.
The company deals mainly in frozen sea foods and has deep freezers built like micro houses (cold rooms) in different locations inside the company.
There were different workers in different departments, some were involved in processing, some in packaging and some attached to the different cold rooms. There was one amiable young woman who seems attitudinally different from the rest; while others go around with their sense of entitlement, this woman is always full of gratitude for even the most ‘entitled privilege’.
There is this eccentric gateman whom everybody loathed and counts less than nothing! It is somewhat rare to see the factory’s workers exchanging pleasantries with this security man as most people are always in a haste to either enter the factory gate in the morning or exit it in the evening. The young woman will always take her time every day to appreciate this gateman whose job seems like the most looked-down-on in the factory.
Though, throng of workers enter the same company every day, they all carry a sense of entitlement as the gateman opens and closes the gate but not this young woman, she will always say ‘thank you’ each time she comes in contact with the gateman.
One fateful day or maybe I should say ‘unfateful’ day, in a rush to change over from the factory’s outfit to her casual dress, she mistakenly locked herself in one of the room-sized cold rooms! She did everything to unlock it but to no avail, as it can only be opened from the outside.
She tried some few more tricks but none worked out. She started shouting on top of her voice to see whether someone somewhere could come to her rescue but all the cold rooms were heavily insulated against heat and noise.
When it was around 6pm in the evening when virtually all the workers had left, the gateman felt uneasy as he could notice that he had not seen the young woman whom he has gotten almost used to exchanging pleasantries with. He suspected something wasn’t right somewhere and decided to search through the factory for her.
His diligent search led him to the cold rooms and he started opening them one by one until he got to this particular one where the woman was almost frozen to death! She was rescued as many will say by the gateman, but actually by her act of gratitude! We must be intentional when it comes to reaching out to people with words of gratitude. You will never know when your attitude of gratitude will speak out of you; in the case of this young lady, it was actually when she needed it the most!
Albert Einstein said, “I am thankful to all those who said NO to me. It’s because of them I did it myself”. A deep understanding of gratitude extends even to the people that rejected us! You need to also appreciate people that said NO to you, people that rejected you and even the people that left you when you needed them the most.
The truth is that if they’ve done otherwise, may be you would have settle for less in life. Good people give you happiness. Bad people give you experience. Best people give you memories. Appreciate everybody!
John F. Kennedy said, “We must find time to stop and thank the people who make a difference in our lives”. Learn to celebrate the people in your life, they are in your life for a reason. List out seven people that have been so instrumental to your development and send them messages telling them how they’ve added so much value to your life.
Be intentional about appreciating the people in your life; stop taking them for granted. An attitude of ingratitude can literally block love, blessings, and destiny from finding you. Don’t be the reason you don’t succeed!
QUOTE OF THE WEEK: “Gratitude in advance is the most powerful creative force in the universe”- Neale Donald Walsch