Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Acknowledging the good that you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance. Eckhart Tolle

Are we grateful for what we have, or are we feeling one more something is what we need? We might think that if we get to… or accomplish… then we’ll feel grateful. Oprah tells us, “If we aren’t grateful for what we have, we will never have enough.” That doesn’t mean it’s wrong to want more, to strive, to build, or to grow, but we need to be grateful for the blessings we already have in our lives.

One of the things said in an Illustrated Journal workshop Saturday, is that members in the audience who kept a journal said they couldn’t believe what a bad state they had been in at specific points in their lives. Looking back over concerns they had they could see those that were resolved, those that didn’t matter anymore, and those they still had to deal with.

Journaling gives us clarity about our lives I don’t see how we can get any other way. Adding illustrations to our journal gives us a creative outlet, creativity feeds our soul, and sometimes we may feel something is missing in our lives and it might be creativity. We get so busy doing this and that, we may look back on a time that was filled with joy and find where the joy came from was some creative outlet that we’ve given up as life got busier.

Listening to the radio not long ago a singer (I can’t remember his name) was talking about how he put out a new album and thought it would sell a couple thousand copies but it became a big success and his life spun out of control. Years later he listened to a speaker who said something that hit him profoundly, “Creativity is beautiful.” He realized he’d gotten away from being creative, and that realization made a significant impact on his life. By bringing creativity back into his life he brought back balance, joy, and gratitude.

Gratitude is a powerful catalyst for happiness. It’s the spark that lights a fire of joy in your soul. Amy Collette

It isn’t always easy to be grateful for the changes we see. We think things should be better, but what if we have to be grateful they aren’t worse? What if we aren’t built for a life of ease? What if a life of ease makes us weak? Who gets to decide who is living a life of ease?

Of course, I say all this as one who lives in relative ease, safety, and abundance. Yesterday my husband was watching a YouTube video on people living in their vehicles in Calgary. They’ve created a community that like turtles, takes their home with them, and as long as their vehicles can move it seems to be a workable solution. They help each other out as a community and share information on how to handle the winters.

Living in a van might not sound great but it is giving a community of people dignity, and freedom without infringing on the rights of others. We might be surprised how happy a simple life can be. I didn’t watch the video enough to understand how they look after some of the simple things in life like bathing and using the bathroom.

If it isn’t happiness that brings us gratitude, but gratitude that brings us happiness can we be grateful for the life we have?

The struggle ends when gratitude begins. Nicole Donald Walsh

As with all commandments, gratitude is a description of a successful mode of living. The thankful heart opens our eyes to a multitude of blessings that continually surround us. James E. Faust

When we focus on our gratitude, the tide of disappointment goes out and the tide of love rushes in. Kristin Armstrong

Thank you for reading this post. Please come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

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