What Are You Thankful For?

It's Thanksgiving this weekend (in Canada), and it makes me wonder how many people just see another day off work. Do people really think about what the holiday means? Or do they just want their turkey? I think most people do think of it as a time to get together with family, but how many people actually think about what they’re thankful for? And do they just do it the one day, or do they think about it year round? Because really, if you’re only thankful when you’re supposed to be thankful, how thankful are you?

7979224998 44a7389429Think about it. We have loads of stuff. Loads of it. It may not feel like loads. It may feel like we need more, but really we have more than we think we do. Do you have family? Friends? Food? You also probably have so much stuff you could have a yard sale or two. And I’m not saying it’s bad to want more. I want more. You probably want more. There is nothing wrong with being ambitious and going after more in life. But if the focus is always on wanting more and never on what we already have, then I think that person is going to be unhappy.

Think about the last time you achieved something you wanted. Not a goal, but a thing, an object. It made you happy, didn’t it? Maybe it still makes you happy. But I bet you want something else now, don’t you? You want the next “thing” whatever that might be. And there is nothing wrong with liking nice things. But what if you only like nice things? What if the only thing that makes you happy is buying a new thing to replace the old when you get bored with it? What then? Isn’t that sad? Isn’t it sad to think that while you’ll enjoy this, you have to keep buying new things to distract you from the fact that your life is empty?

Okay. So what am I getting at with all these questions? What I’m getting at is this Thanksgiving and other times throughout the year, the focus should be not on objects to be thankful for, but things that money can’t buy. Things like love. Things like family. And simple things you wouldn’t normally think about buying like a house to live in and food to eat. And yes, you can be thankful for objects if they are special to you or necessary, but also think about the people in your life that are special to you. If you had to choose between a loved one and a pair of shoes, I’m pretty sure you’d choose the loved one.

That’s what I think Thanksgiving should be about. Not objects. Not possessions. Not a day off work. But people. People who matter in our life. People who would do anything for us, just to see us happy. We should be thankful for them, because we never know how much time we have left with them.

Photo Credit: Ukhviid Pumpkins via photopin (license)