A 92-year-old well-poised and proud man, who is fully dressed each morning by eight o’clock, with his hair fashionably coifed and shaved perfectly, even though he is legally blind, had to move to a nursing home. His wife of 70 years had recently passed away, making the move necessary.
As the admitting nurse maneuvered his walker to the elevator, she provided a visual description of his tiny room, including the beautiful curtains that had been hung on his window. “I love it,” he stated with the enthusiasm of an eight-year-old having just been presented with a new puppy.
“Mr. Jones, you haven’t seen the room; just wait.”
“That doesn’t have anything to do with it!” he replied. “Gratitude is something you decide on ahead of time. Whether I like my room or not doesn’t depend on how the furniture is arranged … it’s how I arrange my mind. I already decided to love it. It’s a decision I make every morning when I wake up. I have a choice; I can spend the day in bed recounting the difficulty I have with the parts of my body that no longer work, or I can get out of bed and be thankful for the ones that do. Each day is a gift, and every day I’m here I’ll focus on the new day and all the happy memories I’ve stored away.”
He continued, “Life in an odd way is like a bank account. You withdraw from what you’ve put in. I’m still making gratitude deposits. I have had so much that I can still be grateful for and happy about.” To remain happy, remain in gratitude, and you’ll always have plenty to draw from.”
With a stewardship campaign about giving from our gratitude, hopefully this story will cause each of us to think how much we have had about which to be grateful. Like Mr. Jones so wisely stated, “Gratitude is something you decide ahead of time.”
Times might seem a little tough right now, but we can always choose to be grateful, especially for God’s many blessings. There are so many. We’ll never run out of them. So we can give and be grateful and know that it pleases our Father in Heaven.
George Purnell, Stewardship Chair