As perhaps you have by now surmised, the Intramuralist believes thanks can be given in all scenarios and circumstance. Don’t let me suggest that it’s always easy nor that we always feel like being intentional with our gratitude. I would never diminish the days that are hard for each of us. Nonetheless, I do believe reasons for thanksgiving are always plentiful.
Today, I am thankful for…
Life. Liberty. The pursuit of far more than happiness. Democracy. Elections. Voting. The absence of dictatorship. The freedom to agree or disagree. The right to free speech — even when we actually disagree. The Constitution. The Bill of Rights. Freedoms endowed by our Creator. The wisdom foreseen by our founders.
Communication. Listening. The encouragement to listen. Authentic dialogue. The art of dialogue. Respectful dialogue. Dialogue where opinions aren’t all pre-determined (see again, listening). Community. Other people. People to remind us that self is not as important as we think it is. Humility. Being grounded. Accountability. Wise persons bold enough and compassionate enough to help us in the grounding.
Faith. Freedom within faith. Freedom of faith — not freedom from it. Free will. The opportunity to see God and love him back. His creation and the challenge and responsibility to love his children well. Forgiveness — especially when we’ve needed it most but had somehow had no idea.
Ice cream. Sundaes. Coffee. Playing cards. More coffee. Jokers wild. Walking on sunshine, water, or just plain walking. Game shows. Knowing the Daily Double. The Oak Ridge Boys. Computers. Christmas. iPods, Pads, etc. Diet Coke. Mountain Dew. Caffeine-free Mountain Dew. Garland. (Not tinsel, though… too messy on Dec. 26th.)
Chocolate. Hot chocolate. Whipped cream. Starbucks. Lattes. Nonfat. Foam. (Did I mention coffee?) More foam. Sunrise. Sunset. “Fiddler on the Roof.” Old musicals. Old books. Classics. Julie Andrews. New movies. Star Wars. Han Solo. The princess. That Darth is not my father.
Music. More music. Mariah Carey. Martina McBride. Miranda Lambert. Bruno Mars. The Beatles. London. Those big Beefeater hats. Prince William and Princess Kate. Monarchies. Monarchies not here. Broadway. Elphaba. Empathy. Compassion. Selflessness. Teachability. Tenderness. Truth. Growth. More growth. Recognizing both the need for growth and progress.
Respect. Submission. Honor. The elderly. Youth. The privilege of learning. The responsibility of teaching. Taking them seriously. Being intentional. Sometimes being silly, too.
Old dogs. New tricks. Recognizing none of us have life all figured out. College football. College basketball. Good games. The NFL. Positive attitudes. Knowledgeable fans. Cheering for a good play by the other team. The other team. Cool uniforms. Nike. Adidas. Sweats on a Saturday morn. Swag. (Sometimes no swag.)
Falling leaves. Brilliant colors. No more to pick up. Winter snows. The beach. Dreaming of the beach as winter arrives. The mountains. Water by the beach and the water by the mountains. Friends there. Friends here. Friends who love you no matter what. Thick or thin.
Foreign countries. Home. Coming home. Clean laundry. Sheets just out of the dryer. Picked up toys. Puzzles. Getting the toys out. Throwing them everywhere. Children. Babies. Special kids. Mature adults. Even teenagers… well, most of the time.
Sitcoms. Sundays. “Cheers.” A good toast. Baking. Alma maters. Work. Days off. Vacation. Christmas music. Creativity. Brainstorming. Donuts. (P.S. brainstorming while eating donuts is extra good.) Wine. The first miracle. All miracles. Being aware of them. Vision. Seeing rightly. Acting wisely. Loving those around us. The opportunity. The challenge. The joy…
Yes, these things make me thankful… today…