Thank "FULL!"

The question I am about to ask is going to sound unusual, but please stick with me. If you could view yourself as others view you, what would you see? I’m not talking about your physical appearance. I’m talking about the person you are. What adjectives would you use to describe yourself? Stop and think for a minute.

I have a second question for you. Would those who know you well agree with your personal assessment? Being quiet and reserved, as I am, can easily be interpreted as aloof and uncaring. Going out of my way not to be a burden to anyone can really be misinterpreted! A perfectionist, as good as that sounds, can be a relational ball and chain.

I caution you not to ask your spouse, friends, or family what they see in you unless you are prepared to accept their honesty. Sue, on occasion would say, “Stan, you are a good man.” I miss hearing her say those words, but I hold no illusory thoughts that those six words comprised her total opinion of me. At best we are all complicated. There was a key component missing in my life. Although I was thankful, I lacked in possessing and expressing being thankFULL.

You might be wondering where I’m going with this line of thought. Okay, I will bring it home. About a year ago a brain aneurysm survivor, a member of the Upstate Brain Aneurysm Support Group, gave me a book. She bought a book that she thought would help me in my grief. She had no idea the impact that book would have on me in a totally unrelated way.

One specific study caught my attention: the physical and mental benefits of positive personal thoughts combined with ending the day identifying three things the participants thought they did well that day. Altering the focus from positive thoughts to prayer, I have ended every day for the past year by thanking God for at least three things specific to that day. Without a doubt I can say that I am a more thankFULL person than I was.

Thanksgiving is only a few days away. Will you consider adding thankfulness to the end of your day as I have done for the past year? You can also tell the special people in your life that you are thankful for them. Use discretion, of course. Written notes and cards can be very effective, especially to seniors who are alone and are often forgotten. Telling your spouse can be very relationally rewarding. Your children, no matter their ages, need to hear that you are thankFULL for them.

On a final note, after reading the book mentioned above I wrote the author to thank her. She sent me a signed copy of her book, which I gave to the woman who had given me the book. The author is the C.O.O. of a major international company. Please share this blog if it has blessed you.

Stan Means
Elder Source Senior Ministries
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