Tuesday, July 22, 2008


Thankfulness. It's not a very small word, but its length really doesn't do its meaning justice. The dictionary definition is, "feeling or expressing gratitude; appreciative." Sure, that's just a few words. But they mean so much, and I know that I personally forget what it means to be thankful quite often.
We live in a country where everyone wants instant gratification. No waiting, no work, no cost. We want what we want now and we don't care about anything else. Once we get whatever object we currently have our sights set on, it doesn't seem worth it anymore. Then it's on to the next thing.
It's so easy to forget.
I talk to God frequently. But I realized recently, all I'd been talking to Him about was my problems. My never-ending, extremely frustrating problems. All the ways my life wasn't exactly how I wanted it to be. In the middle of my complaining, it hit me: God's given me so much...and all I can do is ask Him for more, for better?
I then resolved to stop complaining and try to be thankful. And I began to see little, tiny occurances in each day that could only be God working in my life, reminding me that He loves me no matter how whiny I am, that He will always give me another chance at being thankful for all He's done for me.
Yesterday, I wrote an entry on thankfulness in my journal. I just began listing anything and everything I was thankful for, and when I reached the end of the page, I could hardly stop. The more I wrote, the more things I came up with to thank God for. He's given us everything - our lives, our families, every material possession we own - and the least, the very least, we can do is stop and thank Him, and express our gratitude for the great, amazing, wonderful things He has done for us undeserving, wretched sinners.


Words are interesting things to think about. They are different, sometimes almost random, combinations of the twenty-six letters in the English alphabet. Each combination has a meaning attached to it. Strung together in a sentence, words mean not just what they mean individually, but, depending on their placement and the accompanying words, they can mean something else entirely.
Words are powerful. They can be used to hold everyday conversation, make a joke or comment, criticize someone or something, teach, build up, tear down, scold, and they can mean different things in different situations, given the frame of mind and current emotions of the person speaking them. Words can be used to draw people in or push them away. They can affect a person in nearly unlimited ways.
Words provide a common way to communicate, which is good. But they can do so much damage, too. Proverbs 12:18 says, "Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing."
Life would be nearly impossible without languages that can be spoken and written. We would rely on symbols and movements to communicate. I couldn't be writing this entry without words. Written directions on street signs keep us safe. Books, newspapers, magazines, etc., teach, inform, and entertain us. But the most important things words do are enable us to read the Bible and allow us to witness to others. Though they can be painful sometimes, words are arguably the most valuable thing we have.