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Many of the prayers Jesus spoke (according to the Bible) began with “thank you.” A prayer of thanks or gratitude is a good practice to follow, especially when life is not manifesting according to plan.

Before I even rise from the bed, I begin my day with the acknowledgement and gratitude of waking up to another day. I breathe. I am alive. There are mornings when I awake in time to see the pink of sunrise or the afterglow of the full moon before the dawn. The exhaustion I felt the night before has been erased and my energy is restored; for that alone I am thankful. Shortly thereafter, I am lovingly served a cup of coffee by my husband and together we share a spiritual reading that gives us a common focus and consideration. I often find it difficult to leave this morning space of sharing, appreciation, and loving companionship.

Whether the day is filled with special tasks, heavy chores, professional responsibilities, or fun activities, you and I get to choose how we will attend to such matters and with what frame of mind. An “attitude of gratitude” can make any situation lighter and your awareness more positive.

The stress of a hard day at the office can be replaced with gratitude for employment. Disgruntled thoughts about a long commute home in the snow quickly disappear when you see a homeless person sleeping on a sidewalk in the midst of winter. The pressure of bills to pay can subside when a paycheck is automatically deposited into your bank account. Feelings of loneliness quickly disappear in the hugs of a grandchild. Even if the starting point of gratitude is being thankful for your breath, for life, for the food you’ve just eaten or the shelter in which you live, it can be enough to change thoughts of lack into appreciation for what exists. Once gratitude is felt and embodied, that feeling of abundance, in its smallest form, can magnify what is present and attract even more Good into your life.

Meister Eckhart is credited with saying that, if the only prayer we ever said was “thank you” – that would be enough. I say, he’s right. There’s far too much complaining going on. I know I must be constantly vigilant in this matter. It’s time to appreciate all we have in our lives – past, present, and future possibilities. Every moment is the right time to express sincere gratitude. And in so doing, watch and experience our worlds attract greater good and expand beyond our wildest imaginings!

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!