By definition, gratitude is being thankful for the special, precious things we are presented with each day. It could be a person, a place, an experience, a circumstance, or an object. It is simply something we did not obtain on our own. We didn’t work tirelessly for it. We didn’t manipulate a situation for it. We didn’t buy it. The things we are grateful for, the blessings in our lives, are things we can’t take or make in our own strength. The sunrise fits the bill every single time. If it wouldn’t be so redundant, I would say how thankful I was for the sunrise each and every day. It is more than mere beauty in the sky. It represents a fresh start. Another chance to get it right.
Research tells us that practicing gratitude is good for our health – quite literally. Those who make a point to stop and verbalize their blessings are known to have better health, less stress, and positive emotions. People who are filled with gratitude tend to also be more generous and trusting. Interesting, isn’t it? When we take the time to see how fortunate we are outside our own will, we are changed.
I am changed by the beauty of the sky – the sunrises, the sunsets, and everything in-between. It has a way of softening me and reminding my heart of all that is good and right in the world. I always point out gorgeous color schemes to my son. He usually responds with a nonchalant, “that’s cool,” but I know he is paying attention because sometimes he notices the sky first and points it out to me. I pray for him relentlessly – that he will be caught up in the world in a much different way than the world hopes. That he will know he belongs, and he would make others feel the same. I pray he would be a boy who grows up to be a man with great compassion, looking at others through the lens of Jesus. When I feel like I am failing as a parent, I look at the sky and remember the same one who painted brilliance there is the same one who created my child. And when he looks at the sky, I pray he will remember the same. My load is lighter when I stare at the sky – and as I remember and pray, I am ever grateful.
The sun rises and the sun sets. Let’s remember to be grateful for each moment in-between. Share your favorite sky picture this weekend and tell us what you see, remember, or pray. Don’t forget to tag us on social media so we can smile with you!
~ D 🙂
Linking up with our Five Minute Friday friends. Come say hi!
“I am changed by the beauty of the sky – the sunrises, the sunsets, and everything in-between. It has a way of softening me and reminding my heart of all that is good and right in the world.” I absolutely love this line. I feel the same way. Deirdre # FMF 8
I can’t login to make a comment on your blog, but how lucky you were to have that view of the sunrise in Japan! Thanks for sharing a piece of that time with us. I can’t imagine how awestruck you were every morning!
Learning to cultivate gratitude makes such a difference. For the last few years I have been in the habit of noting down a few things I’m thankful for each day and it has been such a helpful practice. I love how beautiful sunrises and sunsets can make us pause and be grateful for a moment. Visiting from FMF #18.
So glad you are carrying on your dad’s legacy!
Thanks – we are too!
As a west-coaster, we look for the sunset rather than the sunrise, but the sentiment is the same. Pretty regularly, I’ll get a text from my mother in law who lives near me, “Look out your window.” I’ll see the brilliance of a unique sunset, my favorite being when the sky turns sherbert orange and pink. I pray God paints your son’s life orange and pink, so that his faith may dazzle all those who meet him.
Amie, FMF #23
Thank you for this!
Sunsets bring back a very happy/sad memory for me as a nurse. We had a very elderly patient in the coronary care unit. She was raising a ruckus on the evening of her admission. The staff was busy so they called me as the supervisor to straighten everything out. When I spoke to her she told me every night she watches the sunset. She was the mother of 16 children; 8 of whom had died. One of those 8 children painted the sunset for her every night and she absolutely had to see who was painting it tonight. Then she would know which child would greet her at the gates of heaven. I didn’t think she was ill enough to die but I’m not the Lord so I moved things around a bit and got her situated so she could watch the sunset because it was so important to her. I also had to stay with her monitoring her vital signs while she watched the sunset. After the sun went down I straightened the room out and settled her for the night. She died in the wee hours of the morning. I hope all her children greeted her at heaven’s gate.
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Wow, this is such a touching story! Thank you so much for sharing. I really hope all of her children greeted her at Heaven’s gate. FMF #43
Oh wow! What a blessing you were to her that night. I can picture her reunion now!
Beautiful post! I definitely understand how your son would respond a bit nonchalantly, but I’m sure he understands the beauty of the sunrise and sunset.
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I think he does…most of the time, anyway. 😉
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The goats got out at daybreak,
putting much upon my plate,
for ‘someone’ made a big mistake;
I didn’t latch the gate.
They spread across the countryside,
a world was theirs to conquer
and my neighbours chose to hide
lest they be driven bonkers
by old nanny Mystic Mary
dining on their roses,
or her grandson Lightfoot Larry
chewing garden hoses,
but gratitude came in the dawn,
for we caught them, every one.