A blind boy sat on the steps of a building with a hat by his feet. He held up a sign which read, “I am blind, please help. ”There were only a few coins in the hat – spare change from folks as they hurried past.A man was walking by. He took a few coins from his pocket and dropped them into the hat. He then took the sign, turned it around, and wrote some words. Then he put the sign back in the boy’s hand so that everyone who walked by would see the new words.Soon the hat began to fill up. A lot more people were giving money to the blind boy.
That afternoon, the man who had changed the sign returned to see how things were.The boy recognized his footsteps and asked, “Were you the one who changed my sign this morning? What did you write?”The man said, “I only wrote the truth. I said what you said but in a different way.” I wrote, “Today is a beautiful day, but I cannot see it.”Both signs spoke the truth. But the first sign simply said the boy was blind, while the second sign conveyed to everyone walking by how grateful they should be to see…When your life seems full of troubles, it seems difficult to maintain an attitude of gratitude, doesn’t it?
All we see are our problems, like a blackened storm cloud casting a dark shadow over our lives. And the times when everything just seems to be going smoothly? We often take these precious moments for granted too, don’t we? Caught up in the bliss, comfort, and familiarity of it all, we can simply forget to be thankful. So what, then, is gratitude?Simply put, gratitude is a habit. It’s a way of looking at the world and all the good things in it with a feeling of appreciation, regardless of whether or not your current situation is to your liking. Gratitude is a heart-centered approach to being at peace with yourself and with all you have. When you practice this feeling of gratitude, it attracts even MORE things into your life for which to be grateful.
Go ahead, try it out right now. What or who do you have in your life to be thankful for?
By Nick Ortner