(Brooke’s generosity Blog)
October 7th, 2018

Thank you. Thank you for reading this generosity insert at Knox Waterloo. Thank you for worshipping God in this community. I am grateful for each and every person touched by the ministry and mission of this congregation.

Gratitude is one of our most profound feelings. Without gratitude, we cannot recognise the value of faith, or hope, or love. Without gratitude, we are doomed to live a life of endless entitlement, where everything comes to us because we deserve it. Therefore, we will never say; “Thank You.” And we will miss out on the precious values of our shared humanity.

We are born naked, and helpless. If we are fortunate, we are born, or placed, into a loving family. In that love, we will learn that most important lesson; ‘we are not alone.’

We are not alone for others love us.
We are not alone for God loves us.
We are not alone for we are able to say, “Thank you.”
We are in relationship, and this makes all the difference.

Every meal, no matter how humble, whether a hot dog at a ball game (next year Blue Jays!), or a Thanksgiving feast, every bite tastes richer and tastier because we share it with others.

There is magic to gratitude. The magic takes place in our hearts and souls when we say; “Thank you.” For in saying these words, we are saying to ourselves, and one other (at least), that we want to be with them. We like them and are so very grateful that they like us. It is good to be together.

It does not matter if we live alone, we are never alone when we express gratitude. For gratitude magnifies our vision to see hope for our world as we celebrate the generosity of God and others to us each and every day. Gratitude multiplies our capacity to be generous to others, and to ourselves.

I have long had a deep affection for Paul’s letter to the Philippians. He speaks of gratitude (Rejoice in the Lord!) as a choice we can make in all things. Especially when we are having difficulty in life. If we look, we can find one thing, just one thing, to be thankful for. I spent years singing in choirs, and each choir I was in sang Henry Purcell’s “Rejoice in the Lord Alway.” In singing this, it settled into my heart and mind. It is a comfort and a joy to me.

Philippians 4:4–7 (from Henry Purcell’s Anthem)

Rejoice in the Lord alway,
and again I say rejoice.
Let your moderation be known unto all men.
The Lord is at hand. 

Be careful for nothing;
but in every thing
by prayer and supplication
with thanksgiving,
let your requests be made known unto God. 

And the peace of God,
which passeth all understanding,
shall keep your hearts and minds
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Happy Thanksgiving!