Continued from Part II:
Because—and this is something to face squarely—you’re not a princess. As the Polish say so smoothly: you’re not the bellybutton of the world! Less princess and more servant will make your life richer than you can imagine.
Thanks multiplies joy
Being intentionally thankful for specific things makes your life blossom. One day I was pitying myself about being far away from my friends and my friend Jenny said, “Anita, you HAVE to give thanks NOW for THIS. If you don’t, you’re going to become a bitter, miserable person.” I burst into tears and said I don’t want to be bitter and miserable. So later that day, even though I felt everything was gray and dismal, I heard a CD playing beautiful songs and I made myself thank God that I could hear. I was washing dishes and looked out the window and saw bright blue sky and made myself thank God that I could see.
It was a baby step, but it was in the right direction, and I started thinking about how overwhelmingly rich I am, just by acknowledging two senses.
My friend Sarah says being thankful is life-changing. She was burning out by working full time and going to college and pulling all-nighters for brutal classes. She found a little hide-out in a stairwell at college that became her refuge. Here she could sit on the carpet and cry and list the things she was thankful for, despite her extreme exhaustion. One day as she sat there, she heard another student in the stairwell on his phone, talking for ten minutes, telling his friend that prayer makes a difference and that he should keep praying because God hears. Sarah put that conversation on her list. When you start looking for things to be thankful for, you’ll be surprised at what emerges. Try it!