What Are You Grateful For?

by Karen on August 2, 2010

One of our volunteer leaders and her friend who's helping her tie her shoe.

One of our volunteer leaders and her friend who's helping her tie her shoe.

My dear friend, Tom Davis, Pres of Children’s HopeChest, an international child advocacy organization, did a blog post today called What are You Grateful For?

He said, “Perspective. Today’s post really got me thinking about my life vs. the rest of the world. I thought I would make a top 10 list of the things I’m grateful for that most of the world doesn’t have access to. It’s helping me think differently about them and me. What would my life look like without these things? No particular order here. What would you add to this list?”

Top 10 Things Tom’s Grateful for:
  1. Clean water that comes out of my pipes and hot water.
  2. 24 hour access to doctors, medical facilities, and medicine.
  3. Grocery stores.
  4. Employment.
  5. Indoor plumbing, including toilet paper.
  6. Educational opportunities for my family.
  7. Electricity.
  8. Access to banks and loans.
  9. Opportunities for my children, athletic teams, artistic opportunities, field trips, etc.
  10. A vehicle and/or transportation.
Great list. I would totally agree with all of what Tom said.

My list is a little different. I think what we’re grateful for has a lot to do with where we are in the seasons and experiences of our life.

I’ve spent most of my last five months spending time helping my mom (& mother-in-law) both move into Assisted Living (one in PA and the other in VA) and helping out with Young Life Capernaum for high school kids with disabilities. Those experiences have  made me grateful for so many things I take for granted that impact every moment of every day.

This is my friend Koren and her sister Alexis, using her iPad so she can communicate.

This is my friend Koren and her sister Alexis, using her iPad so she can communicate.

So, here’s my list I posted on his site:

  • Speech – being able to say what’s in my head.
  • Mobility – to get where I want to go, when I want to.
  • Eating – feeding myself, whenever I want to eat.
  • Hearing – being able to communicate with sound and enjoy music.
  • Seeing – to enjoy all the colors of life.
  • Bathing – without needing someone to help me in the shower.
  • Toileting – without needing assistance.
  • Muscle control – to control my body, even to type this list.
  • Reading & Writing – to enter into other worlds, learn and travel in my mind.
  • Driving – taking myself wherever I want, when I want (it was really hard for my mom to finally give up driving).
  • Medicines – that help with pain and physical problems.
  • Independent living – to be on my own.
  • Friends – people who love me and don’t judge me by how I look or act (that’s a big one for me!).
  • Family – that loves me when I’m at my worst as well as my best.
  • Just Being – to be able to enjoy life and all that God has given me in whatever circumstance I’m in.

Okay, my list can go on and on. I’m grateful for so much. I usually take time at the end of the day to thank God for something I’m grateful for. Sometimes, it takes up the whole page. Sometimes, when I can’t see the forest for the trees because I’m so tired, I just say, “Thank you.”

God hears.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

allie larkin 08.18.10 at 6:11 pm

Karen, I loved reading this, and it was good to hear. We all “know” these things, but I think we all need to make our lists and read them ever day.

I am grateful that God has not ever given up on me.
I am grateful that He has chosen to use me for His purposes, even though He knows exactly where I am and where I am not.
I am grateful that I am able to hear the gospel.
I am grateful for friends that accept me in all my frailties. Which are usually disguised as strength.
I am grateful for my husband, my grandchildren and their moms and dads.
I could sit here all day. Thanks for this.

Deborah 04.06.11 at 3:06 pm

Thanks so much for sharing your list. I am thankful for so many of the same things you are. I am thankful for my husband, my daughters, my grandchildren, my home, my church and like you said the list can go on and on if we take time to sit down and think about it. Most of all I am thankful for Jesus who died on the cross for us that we might be saved from sin and have eternal life.

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