Not in the Mood
I get it. For the past several days and for a couple more, we have been discussing how to live gratitude as a way of making the mundane less mundane, how being thankful can make the ordinary a bit extraordinary. We all lead lives that contain the humdrum, the mundane, the ordinary. Someone asked me why take time out of that “yawning existence” to give thanks. I get what they are saying. You need to pick up the cleaning or mop the floor or do some homework or any one of ten or more different things that we need to do in our daily lives. And here I am asking you to take some time out to give thanks. Better yet, take a few minutes to thank someone else. Thing is…you just are not in the mood.
Sometimes in our journey of life we encounter that detour called “Not in the Mood”. Why bother to be grateful? Most of us do not walk around trying to find something to be thankful for in our daily lives. We are far too busy doing other things, necessary things. What happens when the climate of our lives leads us to not be in the mood for gratitude?
Maybe we need to revisit what many people consider the benefits of gratitude to be. First, many believe it releases chemicals that make us feel good. Following along that same line, is the concept that gratitude leads us to be of service to others. Those who participate in practices of thankfulness believe such things empower them and lead them to better spiritual, emotional, and physical health.
One of the best things I like about showing and speaking gratitude is the focus it can ring to my life. And that leads to another benefit, that of growth. Being grateful does not mean I never want to do something else. It does mean that I recognize the good in today and that help me grow – again spiritually, emotionally, and in maturity.
Gratitude also brings about good works, the spread of compassion and charity one to another. This can also result in healing and acceptance of the stages and seasons of life. Most importantly, being thankful can help overcome difficulties and tragic circumstances. So the next time you think you are just not in the mood to give thanks, realize that is the very time that you need it the most. We don’t need long, drawn-out expressions of gratitude nor do we need to have a degree in writing to say thank you. In the book “Think, Ask, Tell” Lutheran writer Charles Lane describes showing gratitude as caring for one another.
Not in the mood? Then give thanks for all you have, even if it isn’t that much. To paraphrase Mother Teresa: “Being grateful is prayer. Gratitude is strength. Thankfulness is love. Expressing appreciation is a net of love by which you can catch souls, gain friends, and improve your life.” Practicing, expressing, living thankfulness is a walk by which we enhance our living. It is an art form we should practice and then perform, not just for others but for ourselves.