It is never considered overkill to call time out from our labors and count our blessings. Frankly, we should do this every day, but for many, including me, the Thanksgiving season is the time of year that I really step away from the world and acknowledge my gratitude. Therefore today’s post will not be a traditional Selling Point message, but rather a few minutes of sharing some of the things I’m truly thankful for, from my heart rather than from my big mouth.
I am thankful I came into this world in the USA, though I obviously had no control over where I was born. As angry as I get at our nation’s “leaders”, and as many “warts” as our country has, I still count it a blessing to live here where I still have the freedom to live according to the principles and standards I believe in and am led to follow.
I am thankful for my parents and grandparents, all long dead, who loved me enough to steer me in a direction to insure I became aware that I was here as a result of an eternal Creator who not only expects me to live a life of integrity and personal accountability, but Who loves me in ways very hard for mere humans to fully understand.
I am thankful for physical health, although at age 65 I’m no Pierce Brosnan. I survived a heart attack at 59, and although I gulp a daily handful of prescription meds, I still looked and moved better than 90% of the old timers at my 42nd (age 60) high school reunion.
I am thankful to be blessed with a reasonable amount of intelligence and the ability to communicate with people in ways that sometimes even amaze me. I’ve been fortunate enough to have written and published a book, and still conduct online sales coaching for reps in 8 states each week. I take no credit for those abilities, but for whatever reason I was gifted with them, I strive to be a positive role model for everyone I encounter and influence through my retirement vocation.
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I am thankful to my wife of 36+ years for loving me, even when she doesn’t like me. She is and has been a great partner and companion to me, as well as mother to our grown children and grandma to the “greats.” She is able to do something few women would be willing to do; put up with me and my complex temperament. She balances me and keeps me grounded when I get carried away with some of my crazy and grandiose ideas.
I am thankful for and dearly love my grown children, Adam, Andrea, Andrew, and Amy. They are all physically, mentally, and emotionally healthy, for which I am proud but take no credit. All four, from the ages of 41 down to 31 have earned college degrees and are homeowners, and have little debt other than their homes. They have vastly different temperaments from one another, but still show me love and respect, and even act like they are glad to see me when we are together. I understand this occurs due to grace and not because of anything special I do or have done in the past as their father.
I am thankful and filled with love for all six grandchildren; Alex, Cameron, Cade, Colton, Jackson, and Emery. What a joy they are to play and interact with. If I had known grandkids were so much fun, I would have skipped the kids and had them first! I am committed to show them an example of goodness and integrity and to sew into them the same solid values my parents and grandparents instilled in me.
I am thankful for solid financial footing, which many folks my age don’t share, especially after enduring the tough economic times we’ve all endured these last few years. Over 30 years ago I was exposed to a group of financially-wise people who shared with me the principles and building blocks to financial independence. Because of this and an awesome spouse, we are debt free today, and no longer have to work in order to eat, but rather are able to share our talents with others in the marketplace. For years we have been diligent about saving and investing and feel very secure as we enter our retirement years, and are grateful to be in a position to support causes and organizations we believe in.
I am thankful for my spiritual life, and for being exposed to mature believers who showed me how to have a real relationship with the Creator, rather than “religion without reality”. As a result, I placed my trust and hope in Him and His promises, which are also available to all who will trust in Him; and I look forward to spending eternity with Him when this life is over.
Sometime during this Thanksgiving week I would highly recommend that you get in a quiet place for a few minutes and really think about the tangible and intangible things you are grateful for. Be thankful for the things you have, rather than bitter about what you lack. Exhibiting gratitude will provide you with a sense of well-being, optimism and happiness, and will help you put everything in proper perspective. HAPPY THANKSGIVING!
Riches and glory come from You, You’re ruler over all; You hold strength and power in the palm of Your hand to build up and strengthen all. And here we are, O God, our God, giving thanks to You, praising Your splendid name. 1 Chronicles 29:12-13
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