Thanks Through Darkness

Sometimes it seems like the world is a dark place, and like you may never see the light at the end of the oh-so-long tunnel. Those of you sitting at home reading this with family bickering over politics in the background may know where I’m coming from. On top of that, you’ve got bills to pay, health battles to fight, and jobs that create stress. Some days, you just can’t take one more thing.

A year ago yesterday my Dad passed away from a heart attack. My Dad was always teaching me something. He was a soft spoken, quiet man, but when he spoke you listened (since it wasn’t often). In his passing, he’s even taught me how to give thanks through darkness.

I give thanks because I know that he lived a life that he loved, and one with no regrets. Isn’t that what we all really want? To leave this earth not wishing we had taken that trip, started our dream business, or eaten that last piece of pie? He gave 110% in everything he did, his work, his marriage, his parenting, and he ALWAYS ate that slice of pie.

I give thanks for our villagers, who I love and would do anything for, the same way they did for us 366 days ago. One villager flew to Atlanta and then drove cross country in 24 hours to get us home for the holidays. A group of villagers cleaned my entire house, decorated for Christmas, and stocked our fridge. Other villagers donated their time to help me pick up the pieces; some sent cards, and flowers, and food. (NOTE: If you want to help a friend in a hardship, send food – the last thing they have time for is cooking or even a drive thru.)

My dad’s passing taught me about selflessness. He always made sacrifices so that my mom and I could have a better life. Isn’t this exactly what we all want for our kids and families? Our villagers demonstrated that for us too. I think we need a little more of, selflessness and compassion in this life, especially in light of current events. I refuse to believe that the racist remarks, LGBTQ hate, and extremist views that our election process has brought about are what the majority of our world actually believes in.

As my buddy John Mayer once said: “Pain throws your heart to the ground, love turns the whole thing around. I know the heart of life is good”

I believe that. The heart of life is good, and love will win. I hope that this thanksgiving you can find compassion in your heart for others and give thanks for the people who you call your village. Remember, someone, somewhere has it worse than you do – and we always have something to be thankful for, even in darkness.

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