Thanksgiving is celebrated in America every year in late November to honor the courage and faith of the early Pilgrim settlers. After surviving the adverse conditions in the New World, the Pilgrims celebrated their first harvest by offering thanks to God for His abundance and grace. George Washington, first president of the United States, established it as a national holiday in 1789, creating “a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many favors of Almighty God.”
No matter how challenging our life has been, each of us has some reason to thank God: for the air we breathe from our first breath, for the sun that gives us warmth and light, for the people that gave us food and comfort along the way.
I’d like to share with you some things for which I am grateful to God. . . .
. . . a loving, compassionate family who taught me to give to others and see them in the highest way possible.
. . . deep childhood friendships that have endured for over sixty years and are still a source of support and joy.
. . . wise teachers who opened my heart and mind to the wonders and beauty of this world.
. . . Swami Kriyananda, my lifelong guide, who saw my spiritual potential, nurtured it, and showed me how to live in devotion and service to God.
. . . my husband, Jyotish, who has created with me a life rooted in inner peace and joy, filled with patience and acceptance of all of life’s varying circumstances, and always directed toward self-offering to God.
. . . our son and grandchildren, who have taught me that love has no limits, but is ever-expanding.
. . . my gurubhais who provide constant examples of how to follow the spiritual path no matter how difficult life may be.
. . . having the opportunity to share our Guru’s life-changing teachings with people throughout the world.
. . . the blessing of living in spiritual community, and seeing the heights that people reach when they join together in divine service.
. . . my great Guru, Paramhansa Yoganandaji, for calling me to him early in my life and forever leading me upward on “the spiral stairway of wakefulness” towards God.
. . . and to God Himself who is the Giver behind each of these gifts. I bow to You with a reverent heart.
I’d like to invite you now to take a moment, reflect, and share some things in your life for which you are grateful.
In loving friendship,