Giving thanks for love and bravery

Happy Thanksgiving!  I hope you’re all getting to spend time with loved ones and stuffing your faces and maybe gearing up for some mad Black Friday action.  I hope you’ll also take a little time to be thankful (because it didn’t get that name for nothin’) for all the blessings in your life, big and small.  You don’t need to be prayerful or abstract with your thanks – hug your mom/grandmother/aunt/friend and thank them for all the work they put into dinner, thank the guy at the cash register on Black Friday for his help, etcetera.

(While we’re at it, thank you for reading.  Seriously.  It’s a big Internet and I’m glad you’ve stopped by.)

Saying thank-you will put a little more love in the world, and we always need more of that.  These articles have been making the rounds on my Facebook feed – I hope some of you have seen them already – but they make the case for pouring as much love as you can into the world.  Ideally everyone in the country has read these by now and there’s no need for me to post them, but just in case, here they are: “I’m Christian, unless you’re gay” and the stunning comments it provoked.

I wish I could have those articles tattooed into my memory, because the issue is not just about Christianity vs. homosexuality.  It’s about you and that overweight woman in line with you who makes you feel a little uncomfortable, just because she’s bigger than you think she should be.  It’s about you and that guy with all the tattooes who kind of gives you the heebie-jeebies, just because he’s inked.  It’s about me and the parents in our apartment complex whose parenting skills I have absolutely no right or reason to judge, no matter how much their kids bug me sometimes.  It’s about everybody we see as different, and how “different” still equals “bad” in too many cases, and how by just keeping your mouth shut sometimes when you want to make a joke or a snide comment can make a tremendous difference in the world.

Even better, turn that snide comment into a compliment or a defense.  Dan’s three-page post saved someone’s life and reconnected two shattered families, and that’s only what he revealed in his followup post.  He saved someone’s life by calling out our judgmental tendencies and pleading for us to just be a little bit nicerSaved someone’s life.  It may sound like hippy-dippy bull, but if it actually saves a life, then bring it on.  Bring on tons of it.

It’s Thanksgiving.  Let’s create some reasons for people to be thankful.

(crosspost to Average Fantastic)

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