Gratitude Definition

“On behalf of the President of the United States and a grateful nation, please accept this flag as a symbol of our appreciation for your loved one’s honorable and faithful service.” In my role as a clergyman of over 40 years, I have heard those words countless times. I want to zero in on the word grateful. There are many words that could be said at the death of one who has served in the United States military, but the one I remember most is grateful. We say to the family that we are a grateful nation. Why are we grateful? The answer in the case of one who has served in the military is quite simple. They served, they sacrificed, and we are simply recognizing those actions.

In addition to service we should have an attitude of gratitude about so many things. We can be grateful that we are in good health. We can be grateful for the blessings that God is giving us. We can be grateful for just waking up this morning. We can be grateful for our friends, our jobs, our churches, the communities we live in and more things than we can really mention.

Gratitude is being able to step outside of yourself to know that other people and experiences make life worthwhile. We are not self-sufficient. A person without gratitude can be very miserable. The Roman philosopher Cicero said, “Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues but the parent of all others.” Let us strive somehow to truly live by that philosophy and , make the world a far better place.

We are experiencing some exceedingly difficult and trying times in our world today. Perhaps if we would take the time to express gratitude for our blessings, while still wanting change, our world would change. I believe that the answer always begins by counting our blessings with gratitude. As we count blessings, we truly realize that change and reform are possible and that everyone being created in the image of God is a fact. Because we are all created in the image of God, we can learn to see God in all who surround us.

Let us live the day in gratitude, thankfulness, and appreciation for each other and for the world that God has given us.

Musing 9 2


At times,
our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of
us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame
within us.


is the fairest blossom which springs from the soul.

Ward Beecher

turns what we have into enough.


is a powerful catalyst for happiness. It’s the spark that lights a fire of joy
in your soul.


makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for


Thankfulness is the beginning of gratitude. Gratitude
is the completion of thankfulness. Thankfulness may consist merely of words.
Gratitude is shown in acts.

Frederic Amiel

cannot be traveled to owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the
spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace, and gratitude. –
Denis Waitley

Joy is
the simplest form of gratitude.


No one
who achieves success does so without the help of others. The wise and confident
acknowledge this help with gratitude.

North Whitehead

ordinary life, we hardly realize that we receive a great deal more than we give,
and that it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.


is when memory is stored in the heart and not in the mind.

Lionel Hampton

is not only the greatest of virtues but the parent of all others.




Rejoice always, pray
without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God
in Christ Jesus for you.

1 Thessalonians

Do not worry about
anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let
your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all
understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ

Philippians 4: 6 – 7

But thanks be to God,
who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus

1 Corinthians

Gratitude 2

We must always give
thanks to God for you, brothers and sisters, as is right, because your faith is
growing abundantly, and the love of every one of you for one another is

2 Thessalonians 1: 3

O give thanks to
the Lord, for he is good;
   for his
steadfast love endures for ever.

1 Chronicles 16: 34

For from him and
through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory for ever.


I will give thanks to
the Lord with my whole heart;
will tell of all your wonderful deeds.


Devote yourselves to
prayer, keeping alert in it with thanksgiving.


And let the peace of
Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And
be thankful.


Then I heard every
creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that
is in them, singing,
‘To the one seated on the throne and to the Lamb
blessing and honor and glory and might
for ever and


But I with the voice
of thanksgiving
   will sacrifice to you;
what I have vowed
I will pay.
   Deliverance belongs to the Lord!’


Then he took a loaf of
bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying,
‘This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of



Lord, I am grateful for this day and welcome the blessings that it brings. I ask you to guide me through the difficulties that I encounter, so that I may be able to live through them and learn from them. As I live the virtue of gratitude, I will find strength to live and thrive no matter what comes my way. Inspire me to spread gratitude to all that I meet this day.


1 Comment

Filed under Monday Musings

One response to “Gratitude

  1. Rose Mancini

    That was good. I love the quotes you provided.


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