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  • Writer's pictureGary Crawford Leadership

Gratitude is the golden frame through which we can see the meaning of life

Happy thanksgiving !

I love this statement: “Gratitude is the golden frame through which we can see the meaning of life."

Only grateful people are happy people! No wonder the Bible says, “Give thanks in all circumstances for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thessalonians 5:18).

As Ingrid and I have traveled to 17 counties over these last two years, sometimes with our teams or various groups, we have seen the best and the worst of human conditions. To know that we live in a land of plenty and relative security, to know we have opportunities and options, moves us to deep gratitude.

To be “present” to feel the joy, the pain, excitement, recognition, courage, and the compassion of others - and with others- is to experience a depth in life that is truly fulfilling. We have the privilege of whatever contribution God allows us to make. To look into the eyes of our most beloved family, to receive a hug that nourishes the soul, to face a challenge that requires more courage than you think you have, to be called upon to endure loss that you can’t bear alone and walk with others who face the hills and valleys of life is to be present and to experience relationship that makes life worth living. We are grateful.

The “little things” that make the big difference. An unexpected note of affirmation, a “thank you“ when you didn’t even realize you had done something to be thanked for, an opportunity to share an encouraging word that puts a smile back on one’s face and helps the other believe in themselves again, a look at a picture that brings back a whole set of happy memories- these small things, given or received, creates gratitude. We are grateful.

An “open heart” to receive and give. A heart that is open to learning, to thinking the best, choosing a high road even when the low road is tempting, to seek to understand before being understood, a heart that is given to empathy. Folks with such hearts create gratitude. We are grateful.

A “Faith” that allows us to know that “God is for us,” that we are loved and graced daily-“ His mercies are new every morning” (Lam 3:23). To believe that God is up to good things in our lives and “He works all things for good for those who love him and are called according to his purpose” (Ro 8:28). This truth creates hope and gratitude. We are grateful.

All this to say “thank you “ for your love, encouragement and contribution to our lives, and both our local and global ministries. We are deeply grateful and pray a wonderful thanksgiving for you and your family.

With Love,

Gary and Ingrid

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