Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thankful Thinking

We are hopefully a thankful couple.  We realize all of our blessings come from our Father in Heaven.  We try to cultivate gratitude by being aware of our blessings.

Here are some of the things I have been thinking about today:

The Gospel of Jesus Christ and the richness, comfort and peace that brings into our lives on a daily basis.  The values and guidance we receive, the atonement and all of its ramifications, the scriptures, solemn prayer, the faith promoting experiences, the opportunities to serve, the upward course in life we are on because of it.  Nothing has influenced everything we do more.

Our Family: spouse, children, parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews, grandparents, ancestors, grandchildren, everybody's in-laws whom we consider to be family.  I have been thinking about all those who came before us and shaped our lives and circumstances, and thinking about those yet unborn, our great-grandchildren and so on.  The choices we make will affect their lives directly.  It is a sobering thought and one filled with tremendous responsibility.

Our Friends:  Each and every one of you that have contributed so much to our lives through your goodness, your uniqueness, and your love.  The shared experiences that make you so special to us and the memories of happy times, times of deep sorrow and everything in between.  I am thinking of the times we have worked together serving one another and others.  And all the times you have added the spice and humor and support we have needed and enjoyed so much.  The things we share that are hilarious to us that only we can appreciate and understand because we were there in a special moment together.  We have prayed for you and your loved ones and you for us.  That praying has been miracle producing, edifying and bonding between us like little else could be.  We feel so blessed to have you call us friend, brother, sister and/or a loved one.   We care for you and love you and want you to always know that you matter so much to us.

Our Health:  The Lord has blessed us with a work to do and has granted us health to be able to accomplish that work.  We have wonderful health care.  We have fresh foods to eat and clean water and modern medicine and lots of hope for a long and healthy life.  Each morning we open our eyes and we thank God for this blessing of relatively good health and promise to serve him to the best of our ability for as long as we are able.  Serving the Lord is a great motivator to stay as healthy as we can for as long as we can.  He has blessed us with his grace when we have fallen short in this department.

Our Purpose: We have a good sense of what is expected of us as Latter-Day Saints, family members, as members of society, and in our community.  Having a valued and recognized purpose and reason to get up in the morning is the best way to stay young and active.

Our Prosperity:  As a people and as a nation we are more prosperous than most people that have ever lived on the earth.  We don't have to worry much about the basics like food, water and shelter as a people compared to many others in lands near and far.  We are blessed personally to have a wonderful home, a good retirement plan and to have all that we could possibly need and a lot more that isn't necessary.  We have always been blessed with a steady income, sufficient for our needs.  We are blessed with comfort and ease in so many ways.  Where much is given much is expected.  We want to pay it forward as much and as often as possible.  The discretionary days we now have allows us more time to serve.  What a blessing.

Our Liberty and Freedom As annoying as some of the politics in this country are, we still owe a debt of gratitude to many who have fought and died for the liberty and freedom we enjoy.  We can  come and go as we please, have a say in the the leadership of the country, and are protected from the terrorism and aggression of other countries because (to date) we have been a strong nation.  We have opportunities to improve our lives through so many avenues denied to many throughout the world.  Through electronics, as well as other means, we can continue to learn all of our lives at an unprecedented rate if we use technology in that way.  We are just very blessed to be living in this day and age as long as we are seeking the good things in life.  If we are grounded in good principles the sky is the limit as to what we can do.  That is freedom.

Our Passions:  Both Jim and I are passionate about our interests both as individuals and as a couple.  We enjoy working together and give each other space to develop our own interests.  We both make continuing to learn a priority.  We have grown into a very compatible lifestyle which affords each of us what we need to be happy and productive as a couple. We support each other and have each other's back.  We try very hard not to be just mediocre.  Relationships require nurturing and work.  We both like to work and to be nurturing and for that I am very grateful.  We have a "we" mentality not a "me" mentality.    We have fun together, especially since we are retired and have more discretionary time.  These passions we have about how we do life together have evolved over decades.  That is why it just keeps getting better.

Our Future:  We have lots of plans.  It is better to run out of life before you run out of plans...not the other way around.  We get this and plan for the things we want to accomplish and do in our remaining years. I am grateful for the security and excitement that lends to our future life together.

Our Faith:  We know that the Lord is ultimately in charge.  We have hopes and dreams that may or may not come to fruition.  Each and every day is a gift.  The important things is we have them, we built them together and we know we can rely on God for whatever we need for whatever the future does actually bring.  It is hard to be unhappy when you are a grateful person.  Becoming more grateful is a process that begins with the recognition of our blessings.

This is the challenge we took on this morning, writing about 10 things we are grateful for on this Thanksgiving Day.  He just gave me his list and I am curious to see how many are a match.  I hope your day has been wonderful and filled with gratitude and love for Our Father who gave it all to us.

I'm grateful for our path! 
 It is looking very promising and beautiful from here.

Now here is the interesting part.  Jim said essentially the same thing in a fraction of the words.  Sheesh, it really is true that women chatter on more than men by more than a few percentage point in any given day.  What's interesting though is that if we were conversing he would be the one expounding.   Guest poster, James:

"Ten Blessings I’m Grateful For
My Wife whom I love and who loves and understands me.

My Heavenly Father who loves and understands me 
and Jesus Christ who is my example and 
who made the Atonement possible.

Our children and their families who bring us joy
 and hope for a bright future.

Friends that know us and that share 
the same world view as we do.

Our home that is beautiful and comfortable and safe.

Our Country, America, that gives us opportunity to
 pursue our dreams and protects our freedoms 
and protects us from tyranny and evil-doers.

A desire to serve.

 Good health for our family.

My career as an educator which gave me 
meaningful work and my family a livable retirement.

A bright future with my wife."

This was a fun exercise.  
Try it will someone important in your life.

Pushing forward....44.5 years ago!


Sister Susie said...

Thank you, Bonnie for reminding me that our Father GOD is in control of all things! Our main purpose is to worship GOD in Jesus Christ through the leading of His Holy Spirit. How precious that is with our families and friends. May our LORD also lead us to share His values with those that don't know Him. GOD's blessings on you and yours, Susan.

Nellie's Cozy place said...

Hi Bonnie,
I am so sorry I never answered your email, I started it and couldn't sit any longer, so stored it and never got back to it.
I so agreed with you, I am very saddened by the tract our country is taking.........just try not to think about it too much or it can overwhelm and depress.......but I have to remind myself that God knows what he is doing, and we already know the end of the story
and we win!!

That was a lovely pic of Robert and Laura and she is glowing, course, he looks pretty darn happy to

Liked your hubbies thankful list as well, and how sweet he mentioned you twice.........hmmmmm, I would say that is a really great sign
for someone married 44.5 years!! lol
We just passed our 42 one and still chugging along............

Hope you had a Marvelous Thanksgiving, did you stay home this year?? or go to Utah??

Take Care sweetie,
Love and blessings, Nellie

Sister Susie said...

Hi, Bonnie.
I was trying to open your newest post and it comes back saying it doesn't exist (?) I e-mailed Nellie to see if she could bring it up on her blog.
Talk to you later, Susan