Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Taking time to be thankful

You know how there are some people who seem to just win all the time? Like if someone gives them five scratch-off lottery tickets, they'll always win at least $5. Or if they enter a raffle with 500 other people, their name gets pulled. You know that person, right? I was never that person. I never won anything, and I'd almost come to the point where I took pride in it, because I was practically the winner at losing. (Talk about a Monica moment, am I right?)

But then one day, I did win something. And it wasn't just a dollar from a scratch-off ticket or an iPod in a raffle drawing. I won a car. That beautiful shiny red car in the photo, to be exact. That's right: I won this very car that I drive every day at my senior after-prom party in high school. For several years, an auto salvage in my hometown would donate a used car they had fixed up, and everyone in the senior class had one chance to win it. I didn't even pretend to hope that my name might be the one pulled out of that bucket, but it was.

I've been driving this car for the last four years — through high school graduation, college, road trips to Kansas City and Ohio, college graduation, and now my first job in a new city. When I think about my car, I think about the wonderful people who spent their time and money to repair it and then turned around and donated it, for no other reason than they hoped to help out some high school kid who might be in need of a car.

This car is a constant reminder for me to be thankful for what I have, because it's easy to get caught up in thinking about everything I don't have. Sometimes it feels like a constant struggle between these two feelings, but I try to remember how the generosity of others led to such a substantial gift in my life and how truly blessed I am. So the next time you think about what you wish you had in your life, take a minute to pause and be thankful for everything you do have. You might be surprised just how powerful it is to give thanks.

What are you most thankful for?

P.S. Thoughts from a college graduate and how to fight successfully

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