Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Gratitude, the Perfect Antidote / Lloyd

A local paper displayed an editorial cartoon that showed a gruffly-looking family seated around the Thanksgiving table. Each one seated was given a label:

Paying for the Bailout, College out of Reach, Healthcare in Shambles, Pension lost on Wall St., Downsized, House Foreclosed, Post-Iraq Stress Disorder, and Outsourced. And the bird on the table was labeled: Goose Cooked.

Satan is known as a slanderer, accuser, adversary, accuser, spoiler, and liar. There’s nothing really positive about this guy. Given half a chance he’ll turn joy into despair.

Today, there are reasons enough to fear. Yet tomorrow many Americans across this land and even in far away countries in military service will celebrate Thanksgiving with gratitude. They will express appreciation to their Heavenly Father for their many blessings.

I recently read a quote that suggests how gratitude can be the perfect antidote for despair and the negative cartoon I’ve described:

“Both abundance and lack [of abundance] exist simultaneously in our lives, as parallel realities. It is always our conscious choice which secret garden we will tend … when we choose not to focus on what is missing from our lives but are grateful for the abundance that’s present—love, health, family, friends, work, the joys of nature, and personal pursuits that bring us [happiness]—the wasteland of illusion falls away and we experience heaven on earth.” (Sarah Ban Breathnach quoted in Thomas S. Monson, “Finding Joy in the Journey,” Ensign, Nov 2008, 84–87.)

May you have a wonderful Thanksgiving season. Ideally you will be with family and friends, and together you will experience a renewal of spirit that protects against the darkness.

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