A Moment’s Reflection (March)

“I am thankful”

A recent article suggested this as an alternative answer to our daily polite question “How are you?” We tend to answer “I’m fine thanks”, even when we’re in the doctor’s waiting room, so perhaps it would be good to think of a more honest answer.

“I am thankful” would need to be said with thought as to what we are thankful for, and who we are thankful to. The answer to the”what” question will be different for everyone. I personally would start with being thankful for life and health, for living in such a stunningly beautiful place, in such a friendly supportive community, for having a ‘job’ that I love and the privileges it brings, of getting to know people in happy and sad times. My list would go on for pages, what would your list include? A scientific study in 2003 (Emmons and McCullough) demonstrated that “a significant positive affect” was found by simply writing down a list of things we are grateful for each day, and they even speculated that “simply enumerating things you are grateful for might be a treatment for mild forms of depression”.

My second question, ‘who are we grateful to?’ is easy for me to answer as I believe in a gracious, loving and generous God. But I know many people who live happy, grateful lives yet do not believe in God. Who are they grateful to? Is it necessary to address our gratitude to someone or something, or can we simply be grateful?

As Easter approaches, I invite everyone to come and join us in one or more of our services, maybe we can help answer some of these questions. At Easter we celebrate the new life that faith offers, as we recall again the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, proving that God’s love is so powerful, even death cannot overcome it. And that really is THE source of thankfulness!

“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18)

May God’s light and life be with any readers of An Tirisdeach who welcome it, Elspeth. (Rev Elspeth MacLean, Tiree Parish Church, tel 220377.)