Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Ready, set, go...

Thanksgiving’s coming. Are you prepared to be thankful? I talked today at the Oh Get a Grip blog about thankfulness in the face of adversity. It’s a tough topic and I know from experience that being thankful isn’t easy. Sometimes just smiling and acting like things are okay hurts so bad that we have to escape other people and hide and cry. Sometimes when we’re in the midst of crisis there seems to be no opening at the other end of the pitch-black cave we’re trapped inside.

2008 has been a terrible year for me, but it hasn’t been my worst year. I’ve had a lot of adversity, but I’ve had a lot of success. It’s so easy to forget that. When things are bad, I focus on one phrase. In the spring of 1997, a woman from my church stood up to give a testimony. This woman, who I didn’t know well because we were new to the church, was battling cancer and in fact knew that her cancer at that point was terminal. She died later that year. But that morning, she was vibrant. I don’t remember much of what she said, but I will always remember two things. She had the most glorious bright smile when she stood up to speak. Genuine happiness flooded from her, and she said those words that have stuck with me, words I think of when things truly seem to suck beyond the telling. She told of what she thought about when she woke in the morning: Cool. I woke up again. What are we going to do today?

Every day is a gift and something to be thankful for, not just at Thanksgiving, but everyday. Cool. You woke up today. What are you going to do?

9 comments:

Bronwyn's Blog said...

Brynn, this is absolutely beautiful. It's so easy to focus on the negative, but life is full of everyday ordinary miracles - like waking up to a new day. Thank you for reminding us of that and for sharing that woman's thoughts.

BTW, in addition to all the things I'm thankful for, you're at the top of the list.

Brynn Paulin said...

Back at you Bron. You are one of my best blessings.
Hugs,
Brynn

Cindy Spencer Pape said...

Ouch! Really makes you think about how much of our life we waste moping and grouching, doesn't it. Thanks for sharing.

Brynn Paulin said...

It does push me right out of any poor-me funk I might find myself wallowing in.

Caley Greene said...

It definitely puts things in perspective. A beautiful reminder to be thankful for what we have.

Kim Dare said...

Beautiful story, and a wonderful perspective to have on life. Thank you for sharing it.

KellyMarstad said...

Wow, Brynn. That's so powerful. Such a simple thing to think but the truth of it is, you DID wake up again. You were given another day, another gift to spend. What will we do with it and how will we spend that time? Makes my personal moping so much less interesting. Thank you and Happy Thanksgiving.

anny cook said...

What a wonderful blog! Each day truly is a gift. I will tell you a secret... your children observe the ways you face adversity. And when their time comes, they copy your example! I'm positive that you are a shining model for your kids!

Ashley Ladd said...

I hope you had a very Happy Thanksgiving and I hope 2009 will be much better than your 2008.