Thanksgiving Fest Reflections of Gratitude: Day 5


“Guide my feet while I run this race…”  African American Spiritual

I give thanks for 10,000 steps.  That’s what all of us are told we should strive for each day to improve our health, calm our minds, and strengthen our hearts.

I love to walk.  As a minister, I visit many people whose mobility is impaired or painful. I do not take it for granted that I am able to put on my sneakers and get outside.  I appreciate that I can walk across the street to the post office or even just meander around my house.

Most days I get outside right after sunrise. I treasure the mornings I meet friends, share conversations, and laugh.  I also enjoy my solo strolls which provide me time to reflect on the day to come.  My walks offer a bounty of sensations…

The sights:  Surrounded by woods, ponds, and cornfields, I walk on dirt roads and might see a deer, a beaver, or a chipmunk crossing my path.

The sounds: Geese honking as they fly overhead, squirrels rustling in the dead leaves, the brook washing over the rocks.

The smells: Freshly cut hay, that unique autumn aroma of leaves on the ground, the cool, crisp air that tickles my nose.

I give thanks for being able to walk in God’s creation.

What are you thankful for today?

Thanksgiving Fest Reflections of Gratitude: Day 4

Night sky

When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars that you have established; what are human beings that you are mindful of them, mortals that you care for them?  Psalm 8

I love looking at the stars. Gazing into the heavens, picking out the few constellations that I recognize, marveling at the brightness of the planets, and noticing the phase of the moon – all of that is good for my spirit.

There is nothing more restoring after a long meeting or a sad hospital visit than to turn my eyes upward into the far-flung realms overhead. I gain some perspective along with the feeling of smallness that reminds me of the power, creativity, and mystery of the Creator.  In that moment, I don’t have to do anything –  I can simply marvel at the gift of beauty that swirls overhead.

I give thanks for the stars and the beauty of the night sky.

What are you thankful for today?