Gratitude. My grandfather was a coal miner. My grandmother took care of the home, the garden, the laundry, the cooking, the cleaning and the kids. They did not have much in the way that our materialistic society today measures things, but what they did have, they were grateful for it. They had a small garden, a few cows, pigs and chickens. This provided their food. They had great neighbors, friends and family. They had a clear, cold spring for fresh water.
Grandaddy had worked in the coal mines and as a result had black lung disease from breathing all the coal dust. He trouble doing anything without getting out of breath. Grandma had severe osteoarthritis and had a hard time getting around or using her hands.
Even with all these challenges, they were grateful what they had, plenty of food, water and good family and friends. Simple, but important things. Friends dropping in for a quilting bee. Hanging out at the service station playing checkers. A roof over their heads. Watching the ducks down by the creek. All these simple things were appreciated. For my grandparents, gratitude is the parent of character.
Above all they had gratitude.
Gratitude is the parent of character
What does gratitude have to do with character? When one thinks of character, things like trustworthiness, loyalty, kindness and compassion come to mind. Without a spirit of graciousness, the other traits are greatly diminished.
According to Cicero, gratitude is the parent of all character virtues.
What are you grateful for?
Being able to appreciate what you have is one the greatest gifts which you can give yourself. I do not mean that you must be satisfied with your current situation. But you must appreciate it and accept it. Do not settle for where you are.
What I am saying is that if you cannot learn happiness where you are and with you have, you will never be happy.
- Employment (self or otherwise) which allows us to support our bad habits like eating and sleeping under a roof
- Customers and clients that make it possible to get paid
- People that provide our food and water
- A roof to sleep under
Learning to be grateful is the first step toward improving your life. Are you ready to start? What are you grateful for? We would love to hear your thoughts below.