Gratitude for Life

Sixty-two years ago today my mom labored to bring me into this world. I'm grateful for that and for all the parenting labor that came after - for me and my seven siblings. I'm mindful this morning that this is likely the last earthly birthday celebration I'll have with my mom. She's receiving Hospice care in her assisted living room. Overall she still enjoys good quality of life but it's unknown how long that will last. And yet my heart this morning still sings "alleluia" as I try to intentionally honor the many good gifts of God in my life

Joan Chittister and Rowan Williams wrote a wonderful little book called Uncommon Gratitude. Here's what they say about the importance of expressing our alleluias to God no matter our circumstances.

"No life consists of nothing but success and satisfaction, security and self-gratification. Failure and disappointment, loss and pain are natural parts of the human equation. Then what? What use is an alleluia then, except perhaps to encourage some kind of emotionally unhealthy self-deception?

But alleluia is not a substitute for reality. It is simply the awareness of another whole kind of reality - beyond the immediate, beyond the delusional, beyond the instant perception of things.

One of the oldest anthems of the church, alleluia means simply 'All hail to the One who is.' It is the arch-hymn of praise, the ultimate expression of thanksgiving, the pinnacle of triumph, the acme of human joy. It says that God is good - and we know it."


Joy and peace to you today.