Wrote this last year and left it as a draft. Just found it and it’s pretty sobering to read it again. I do struggle with gratitude. (Ghana also makes it a bit harder to practice 😅…) I realized at the time that I didn’t have a practice for gratitude and decided to just write something so I could hopefully get started on one and work the muscle. Not an Oprah disciple (at all) but I appreciated something she once said about the thing that’s common to people who live fulfilling (? or successful) lives is they start their day with some form of gratitude and clarity. For more context, this is what I wrote after having a pretty terrible year and only starting to recover a month prior.
I’m grateful for the group counseling session we had.
I’m grateful for meeting someone who is serious about her faith but also believes in counseling and creates spaces for people that are safe, loving, non-hostile, non-pretentious and non-condemning.
I’m grateful for other Christians who understand pain that you go through and want to see you get through it. Sometimes it might seem like you’ll never find people like that, but some do exist.
I’m grateful for the literal Prince of Peace and the song Prince of Peace, which puts words to the depths of pain experienced in this world and is the most healing thing I listen to when I need to think about peace. Prince of Peace sounds corny because of Christmas plays that give no weight to what that actually means (lol), but it’s nice to understand the meaning in real life, when life disturbs you to no end.
I’m grateful for the Holy Spirit (I can’t stress how real and instructive and important he is, enough 🤷🏾♀️ I wish he was a figment of one’s imagination but…he is literally the secret to life). Sometimes when I feel like I’m making up this whole Jesus thing I remember him.
Grateful for friends and family who are kind. Especially in how they see other people.
Grateful for moments that bring calm, like all the sunsets I see when I’m heading out of East Legon and when I’m driving on the open roads around Burma Camp.
I’m grateful for self-restraint.
I’m grateful for all the ideas that God gives.
I’m grateful that God decided to create the possibility of children lol. Grateful for their joy, and their innocence.
I’m grateful for people whose physical presence makes you feel less alone, because they do not pretend and they are ready to show grace.
I’m grateful for the depths of emotion, ironically(!).
I’m grateful that God is wider and so much bigger than our present situations and our worst thoughts and our unbearable environments.
I’m grateful for the feeling of having (sensible, refreshing) fun. For the feelings of (healthy) laughter, too.
I’m grateful for a functioning body and being out of the excruciating pitch black pit I and my mind and my body were in. I am more committed to living now. Doesn’t mean darkness doesn’t try to visit me sometimes, but there is more hope than there was before. Grateful God has gotten me there.