As many know, my daily prayer includes an Ignatian Examen, the first step of which is to review the day one has just had giving thanks for each of the gifts of that day. And those who have heard me speak know that I often talk about gratitude. As I told an RCIA group at Our Lady of Lourdes this past Sunday, if the single change we could effect was to replace in each person an attitude of entitlement with one of thanksgiving and gratitude, that itself would change the world immensely.
Thanksgiving Day, offers us a special opportunity to give thanks….for the big graces and the little ones in our lives. And so this day I give thanks…
…that I wake up on these cold mornings in a bed in a heated home.
…that I have enough (indeed, more than enough) food to eat.
…that I have a job at a time when many don’t.
…that I have friends who laugh with me in times of joy and who comfort me in times of grief and sadness, who encourage me, who challenge me, and who love me through it all.
…that my daughter has grown into an amazing young woman and delights me with her gift of song.
…that my husband supports me in all things (including my leaving him for six weeks to walk the Camino).
And on this day I remember in a special way…
…those who go to sleep on an empty stomach and wake up on the cold street.
…those who are jobless or who work two and three jobs and still can not make ends meet.
…those who suffer from physical and mental illnesses and lack the means to get proper treatment for them.
…those who do not experience the loving embrace and support of family and friends.
And on this day I ask God to hold them – and all of us – in God’s loving embrace.