Tuesday, October 18, 2011


I drove home from work today with my windows down - hair flying everywhere - just drinking in the crisp air and changing leaves. I felt so happy and so grateful for the subtle beauties of this life.

It's not that I haven't enjoyed my rides home before, but today I was unrestrained in my joy. And what was it that unlocked my wonder? I think it was gratitude, plain and simple and true.

Kyle and I have been thinking about gratitude the last couple of days because we prepared a family home evening lesson on it to share with another couple we joined for family night. We both gravitated towards the topic, probably because we mighta, sorta needed it. Most of our studying came out of Standing for Something by President Hinckley.

As we read, we were amazed at the wonder that he finds in every situation. Though he's seen slums and degradation in his travels and obviously understands the wickedness alive in this world, he is constantly optimistic and amazed by the good. He did not give any fancy explanations about what gratitude is or how to get it. He mostly described what he is grateful for, and how gratitude is the foundation for all other virtues. His advice for us: work at it.

So just in the last 24 hours, I have. I feel a weight lifted in a way. I am focusing on the better, lifting my sights, not settling for ingratitude because it's easier. I know it will take work to keep it, but I know it's possible. So I am going to try and keep a sort of gratitude log at least in my mind every day, just like Elder Eyring suggested.

Wanna know something else cool about gratitude we learned in our studies? Gratitude is exalting. And I don't think it's because it's going to be like, "Hey, you were such a thankful person, here's some great attributes and glory." No, I think it's because the very attitude of gratitude makes us humble and allows us to receive so much more goodness in our lives. Being grateful makes us better. And that is really cool.

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