A New Perspective on Thanksgiving


We all know we’re supposed to be grateful, right? It’s what keeps us from becoming selfish, self-absorbed, entitled snobs who are never happy, never satisfied, and who have no understanding of the needs of others. Basically, it keeps us from becoming the Kardashians.

This time of year, the most common form of expressing gratitude is to write down all the things that we’re grateful for. But I’d like to challenge us this year to dig a little deeper than writing that we’re thankful for our family, friends, Netflix, and Starbucks. Don’t get me wrong, those are all good things to be grateful for, but I also think it’s important to write down why we are grateful for those things! And I’m talking to myself here, too.

So here are some suggestions for all of us to dig a little deeper with our gratitude this year:

1.     Write a list of the top 10 people you can’t live without and don’t just list family and friends. Think about anyone who’s made an impact on your life this year like professors, pastors, advisors, mentors, or coaches. This list can also include musical artists and authors who you admire for their message, and even YouTube personalities who have taught you something this year.

2.     Write a list of the top 10 things you can’t live without. Yes, you’re allowed to list “pizza and Nexflix” here! But also, try to think about things that other people may live without, like hot water, clean clothes, or the awesome MacBook Pro you’re probably reading this on. Try to think about the things that you take for granted on a daily basis.

When you’re done with your list, I challenge you to post it somewhere that you will see it every day. Then a year from now, reflect on it and see if there is anything you’d add or take away.

The whole point of being grateful is to stand in awe of what God does for us on a daily basis, and to be so filled with joy because of what He does for us every day that we want to go out and tell everyone we meet about what He’s done for us. Everything He gives us is a gift, a blessing, not something we earn or even deserve. So this year, remember that all the things you’re grateful for come from Him, because His love for you is immeasurable, and He loves lavishing His love on every one of us, in big ways and small ways.

Have a happy and safe Thanks-Giving!