The great 13th-century German mystic Meister Eckhart
I once said, "If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is 'thank you,' it will be enough."
Gratitude is a sacred practice—a way of knowing and
thanking God. Gratitude lifts our spirits, changes our perspective, and softens our hearts. When we are grateful, we are
humble. We are awake. We are filled with wonder.
Gratitude helps us appreciate what we do have instead of focusing on what we don't have. Have you ever been feeling sorry for yourself—and then encountered someone far less fortunate? Maybe it was someone who was homeless, penniless, or severely disabled. Suddenly your problems seemed very small, and your blessings very big.
Perhaps you think gratitude is only possible in times of good fortune. On the contrary, gratitude can be a way of life. Unity cofounder Myrtle Fillmore suggested being thankful even in the midst of hardship. If you are experiencing difficulty, she advised, "Be grateful in advance for the good you know will come of this." Our faith can be so sure, so unwavering, that even when we're in pain, we know good will come from it. A bold little book called Thank God I... illustrates just how pervasive gratitude can be. It is an anthology of inspiring stories from people who have had some of the worst things in life happen to them—but who later came to see their misfor- tune as a blessing. We read how a woman who had herpes learned to take such good care of her body that she was able to conceive and give birth to a healthy child—something the doctors had said was impossible. We learn about a convicted felon who used his experience to reinvent himself, and to go forth to serve others in powerful and meaningful ways. And we hear of a woman who practiced gratitude religiously to help heal herself of cancer.
One article from that book, "Thank God I Lost My Dream Job ... and Found My Dream," is reprinted in this booklet. You can find other inspiring stories at www.ThankGodI.com. This booklet also includes gratitude prayers from other faith traditions, and a place to begin your own gratitude list. You'll find tips, tools, and insights for developing an "attitude of gratitude."
Gratitude changes everything. Most of all, it changes us. When we count our blessings, we see them multiply. We remember that life is beautiful, that God is good, and that all is well.
May this little booklet help you live in gratitude, knowing
every day that you are blessed, and you are a blessing.
-taken from "How Gratitude Changes Everything"