Thursday, November 25, 2010


 Sing to the LORD with grateful praise;
   make music to our God on the harp.
 He covers the sky with clouds;
   he supplies the earth with rain
   and makes grass grow on the hills.
He provides food for the cattle
   and for the young ravens when they call. - Psalm 147:7-9

Thanksgiving was always a trying time for me.

I grew up going back and forth between my Mom’s and Dad’s houses each week. But the holidays were different. On Thanksgiving (just like Christmas) I used to switch mid day. Just as I had woken up and gotten settled at one house, soon enough, there was a ring at the doorbell signaling that it was time to go. Me and my sister had to pack up our things and leave one parent for the other, never getting to share the entirety of any holiday in one household.

When I used to look back on what became “normal” for me I used to get frustrated. It bothered me that I never knew the stability of sharing any special day with my whole family at one dinner table. But now I look at it very differently.

Today, as I go on my Thanksgiving journey, I realize just how amazingly blessed I am. I am going to share this wonderful day of thanks twice with two sets of parents that love me unconditionally. Many people in this world cannot say the same for even one set of parents or even a single parent for that matter. When I think about how I used to be frustrated by what I saw as a burden, I just feel an immense sense of gratitude that life has gotten me to a point where I can see the best in life’s situations.

Everyone is dealt different cards in the game of life. What we must never forget is the most important rule to winning this game. We must always keep our minds and hearts focused on what is good. We must search out life’s treasures all around us; because even though it may not seem like it, they are there.

I honestly believe that this type of attitude is a decision that everyone can make. I’m sure that many folks will point to the most extreme situations in life and say that I am wrong and I humbly submit that I can only speak from my perspective. I believe that the more we decide to focus on the glass being half full, the faster that glass starts to fill up until it overflows.

There are many things in life that are out of our control. But one of the things that we do have a measure of control over is our attitude. Several years ago I realized this for myself. I used to be one of those half empty dudes. When I decided to make that shift, when I decided to seek out the treasures and blessings already abundant in my life I was better able to see the new ones that were on the horizon.

So let’s use this Thanksgiving as an opportunity to really give thanks. Take an inventory of your life and really try to find the wonderful blessings that you may have missed. Maybe it is an unappreciated friend or family member. Or perhaps it was a new opportunity this year. No matter who you are I believe that you have at least one thing to be thankful for.

And when you are sitting at your dinner table today; whether it is with family or friends or at a soup kitchen because you had nowhere else to go, try to use this meal as an opportunity to take a new step in the right direction.

Let today be the first of many days that you give thanks for what life has brought you. I know that I will; and I hope that very soon this act of giving thanks will bring abundant joy to your life in ways that you could never have imagined. 

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A Convo With God by Clarence Mitchell III is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
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