A Refresher Course in Gratitude

0 comments Posted on November 22, 2019

by Grace Fox

Americans will celebrate Thanksgiving next week. As families and friends feast on turkey and pumpkin pie, many will recall the things for which they’re grateful. I’d love to join the festivities and conversation around my in-laws’ table, but that’s not meant to be this year. I’m far from home, in the Middle East for ministry purposes.

Being here gives me new opportunities to practice gratitude. For instance, it’s unsafe for me, a Westerner, to leave my hotel without a national. That makes me thankful for anyone willing to accompany me outside these four walls.

Buildings are unheated and nights are cold, so I’m grateful for hot morning showers to thaw my joints.

Traffic is congested and feels crazy dangerous. I’m thankful for safety and shuttle drivers with quick reflexes.

In this city where churches have been bombed, I’m thankful for the example of godly men and women who rise above fear and continue to gather for worship, albeit with sandbags and armed soldiers posted at the entrance of their meeting place.

I’m missing the Thanksgiving festivities back home, but I wouldn’t trade this experience for anything. It’s teaching me greater appreciation for things I might otherwise take for granted and helping me realize how blessed my life is. It’s good to have a refresher course in gratitude, yes?

Grace Fox is an international speaker and the author of nine books including Peaceful Moments to Begin Your Day: Devotions for Busy Women. She is a member of the writing team for “First 5,” a Bible study app produced by Proverbs 31 Ministries.


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