Everyday we have opportunities to express gratitude. Stop for a minute or two..... think of all the moments in your life yesterday where gratitude could have been present, not just in the back of your mind present, but on your lips and heart present, gratitude standing tall and loud in whatever moment you had reasons to be grateful.
If you can't think of any right now, consider this, the average adult takes 28,000 to 30,000 breaths each day, imagine all those opportunities.
Everyday we can also be the reason why someone else is thankful. We can be the action or the reaction of grace, we can be the giver or the recipient, we can be the person who holds the open door, or the person who walks through the door and smiles and says thank you.
My paternal grandfather from Panama, Rogelio A. Arosemena, taught us all at a very young age to be grateful and to say thank you. His favorite way of saying thank you was to tell you personally, or to write you a beautiful hand written note. Whenever our grandparents visited us in the States, my Grandpa Rogelio would leave us all surprise thank you notes throughout the house, messages of heartfelt gratitude that we would find after he and Grandma Chichi had gone back to Panama. His gesture became a tradition.
My DAD was the same way. One of my most cherished possessions of all my life is a letter that my DAD wrote to all his children when he moved from CA back to Panama in 1995. It was dated 10/20/1995, he wrote it in Helendale, CA, at that time before he moved to Panama he was living with Ana.
He wrote.... God has blessed me with 5 very dear children, each one with your own characteristics and I would not have it any other way. And I thank the dear Lord for having made all of this possible. I will continue being the same loving Father, willing to help you all. I appreciate all the things you all have done for me throughout the years from which I am very thankful.
I have the original copy of this letter, he wrote it on yellow tablet paper; I keep it in a folder on my desk and for many reasons I reach for it and read it at least once every two or three months.
Below is the link to one of my favorite videos, please take 7 minutes to watch it.
This inspirational video, Gratitude, was well responded to at TED conferences. Brother David Steindl-Rast's spoken words, Gary Malkin's musical compositions and Louie Schwartzberg's cinematography make this a stunningly beautiful piece, reminding us of the precious gift of life, and the beauty all around us.