The Big G — Gratitude

Published 11:37 am Wednesday, November 23, 2016

It’s fall! We smell the earth’s sweet aroma and embrace the cool breeze of a crisp fall day. We witness the earth changing her dress to fiery reds, burning oranges, golden yellows and chocolate brown leaves. Every year around this time, most of us begin to contemplate an attitude of thanks for the many ways that are lives are good. Traditionally, we gather around the Thanksgiving table with family and friends to share fellowship and good food. We come from far and near to celebrate, embody love and give with hearts wide open and arms extended, too; we are invited to bow and give thanks for our many blessings on Thanksgiving Day.

At the annual Thanksgiving family dinner, as we gaze around mom’s dining table, Aunt Sally, who we have not seen or talked to since last year, is there with her unforgettable sweet potato pies. As she serves slices of her pies, a loving hug goes with each piece handed out. Once again, for the 11th time, we make a promise to call her. Uncle Morell, who is 92 years young, tells us how blessed he is not to be laid out on a cooling board. As he raises his trembling left hand, he says that, “Maybe you have gotten too big for your britches because you do not come to see me.” All of my cousins are giggling as they savor the taste of Widow Ginger’s homemade dinner rolls with real butter. They are whispering about how the last time they saw us was at Aunt Elizabeth’s home-going service a year ago. Once again, we are reminded that life goes beyond giving thanks once a year.

In the past, I have slipped into forgetfulness, failing to practice gratitude until next year at the annual family down home gathering. Now is the time to see if there is a way to activate, embrace and sustain an attitude of gratefulness in the daily living of our lives. Most of us tend to take the day-to-day living for granted, overlooking the blessings right under our noses. Each morning, when we open our eyes, we inhale and exhale. Each breath is a priceless gift. We put our feet on the floor and we are given the gift of movement. We step into the shower and turn on the faucet and warm water pours down to allow us to bathe our body temple. We prepare a hot breakfast from the foods in our pantry and fridge. We can bless it before we partake for the nourishing of our bodies.

And speaking of our body temple, it continuously operates without any effort on our part. Our higher power has a built-in GPS that ensures each body system is running at optimum level. So, let’s bless every bone, every joint, every cell, tissue, every organ from our head to our toe because when we are mindful of these activities daily, we fill the gap between our head and our heart and life then becomes sacred. This activates our daily gratitude and we are on the path to becoming a grateful person.

So, although we may not see our relatives until the next Thanksgiving family dinner, as we move forward in the upcoming year, let’s be thankful for our daily life. In doing so, this new attitude of gratitude will be the beginning of a new lifestyle that reminds us that the Divine is present in every moment of our lives, and with a glad heart of gratitude, we say thank you, thank you. And it is then that we can “Positively Inspire” others to also live a life daily filled with “The Big G” — Gratitude!

Yemaja Jubilee is a Charlotte County native and author. She can be contacted at