For everything you have missed, you have gained something else, and for everything you gain, you lose something else. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
Life experiences continually challenge my grasp on gratitude, as cyclically as the tide coming in and going out. When I’m in a season of my life that is going well, gratitude flows pretty easily. And yet I still find that I have to remind myself to be consciously grateful, inviting gratitude to fill my soul and not just lap at the edges. When I’m in a season of my life that is hard, I easily begin to lose sight of the good that happened before. When I’m in a season of my life that isn’t going the way I anticipated it would, it’s difficult to recognize what I’ve gained that I might otherwise have missed out on. At those moments my focus tends to drift toward what I thought I’d have instead of what I’ve ended up with. I need even more tangible reminders to practice gratitude during the dry seasons.
The important thing to realize is that having a grateful soul requires practice. Gratitude doesn’t spring into my soul fully formed and then remain there. Like so much of my soul life, gratitude must be encouraged to grow and increase.
Today is Day 27 of 31 Days of Soul Tending and the focus is practicing gratitude. I’m reminding myself that practice will always be a part of my soul life. On some days it’s easier than others, and that’s ok.