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Monday, 23 June 2008

Be Grateful

Today I went to see my landlady at the Ikeja High Court. Passing through, I saw many families huddled together, talking in groups with a lawyer or two in their midst. You could see the look of despair on their faces...a few were openly crying, some quietly doing so...

As I was about to enter my car, I saw this very young guy of about 25/26, being helped down a black maria. (Vehicles used to convey prisoners). He was handcuffed. Immediately he came down, some people waiting on the side tried to come near him, but the armed guards warned them off as the young guy was led into the courthouse followed by the people I suspect were his family members…all looking sad and disturbed.

I stood there speechless and watched them till they all disappeared into the court house…I dropped the can of soda I was drinking in a trash can, and sat in my car for a minute or so...thinking. The boy obviously was there fighting for his freedom, for his life…the life you and I take for granted.

I drove out of the courthouse a short time later, (of course promising never to willingly visit a place like that again…it’s too depressing) thinking this guy will trade places with me in a minute. I have life and the freedom to live that life the way I choose to, but lately I’ve been concentrating on things I don’t have, and looking for means to acquire them. But now looking at this guy and the other families, I looked up into the heavens and mouthed Thank you God!
All that I have and all that I am is enough for me...more than enough for me...from now on!

There’s so much you and I take for granted. So many things we loose sight of, caught up in the struggles of life. Things we regard as important when they really aren't. Things we cry about, worry about, fight about, lie about. People we are jealous of, try to run down. We make issues of unimportant stuff and waste time and energy on things that don't really matter instead of concentrating on things that life, love, happiness, peace of mind.

Here are the most important things to be grateful for ...

If you close your eyes at night and open it in the morning…be grateful. Because there are those who were not that lucky.
If you have love around you…be grateful
If you are healthy, mentally and physically…be grateful
Apart from this, everything else is secondary…

You know why? Because there’s nothing greater than being ALIVE, and nothing more beautiful than having LOVE around you. And nothing keeps you going as being healthy.

It doesn’t matter whether you are rich or poor, educated or an illiterate, beautiful or not. Married or not, kids or not, famous or not. If you have everything you want, good for you. If you don't, SO WHAT? We make unimportant issues define our lives when it really shouldn't. It’s when we attach so much importance to this things that we are so lost, 'cos when we don’t have them, we seek, when we don’t find them, we cannot be happy and when we are not happy, how can we be grateful? Gratitude is the key to a happy life, because if we are not grateful, then no matter how much we have we will not be happy because we will always want to have something else or something more. We will never be satisfied.

You find that most of us are jealous and envious of things and people irrelevant. We fight, we steal, we backbite, we are nasty to other people, we hate, we go after money, we make ourselves unhappy. If we look closer, we will find that some of our family members or friends we grew up with are gone. People we used to know are no longer here...someone we saw yesterday, is no more today. There are people fighting to live in hospital beds, there are dead bodies in mortuaries., there are people locked away in prison. But you and I are here writing, reading, exchanging views and we are not grateful for that ?

Be grateful for the smallest, simplest things. Be grateful that you can see this beautiful world, that you can hear your children's laughter, that you can speak with your loved ones, that you can understand when people speak to you. Be grateful and don't grief for the things you don't have but rejoice and be thankful for the things you have.

And remember there's someone somewhere who will trade places with a second. So be grateful

If everything I've written here means nothing to you, then look at this man...

...and be grateful.

Even in the midst of something some of us will consider impossible to live with, he's still smiling. Because to him, it doesn't matter that half his body is gone...he's just grateful to be alive.

If you think you have a reason to be unhappy, think again!
You have absolutely no reason.

Be grateful! Always!


Beyond said...

well said my dear.... we surely do have more than enuf reasons to be grateful to God.

phalumptous said...

so many people get too caught up in life that they forget to just thank God for the luxury of waking up every morning, of good health and for all they are today.
Hell Yeah! we need to be grateful @ all times to God! I thank you lord!

Anonymous said...

Hey Linda, that was indeed a great post and was right on time for me as well. Its my birthday tommorrow and i have taken time out to reflect on a lot of things most esp my relationship with my boyfriend on two yrs. he is a great guy but we always have friction and i realise that its simply because i want him to love me in a certain way and when he doesnt then there is a problem. He is not perfect but instead of loving and accepting him the way he is, im constantly making comparisons in my head to other people but this morning i apologised and told him that love is abt loving the imperfect person perfectly. he is not pefect and neither am i but rather than looking at nd wishing for what others have, i need to accept mine and help him in any way i can. I know it will not always be a smooth path but some have it worse and coupled with the pix of the man who has lost half of his body, i'l learn to love what i have, make the most of it and above all be grateful to God.

Thanks Linda for being such an angel as always....wink wink


Anonymous said...

Linda, I am touched. This is wonderful writing. Most of us indeed do not apprecviate the many things, opportunities and favours GOd has gracbiously ghiven us, not because we are living right before Him , but just because He is so merciful. We focus on petty things and dwell on negatives yet we live, breathe, eat etc. Though some of thise things look minute,they count. Others wish they had them. If you are not yet born again Linda you better become.

LoLu said...

*very sober* Lately I just realised I havent been as grateful as I once was. I just wake up these days and all my brain starts doing is making plans for the day or plotting and unplotting. Not a word of thanks to God for waking up.
Thanks Linda. I sure have learned to appreciate all I've got now.

Takea gurl x

Anonymous said...

A thankful heart should be a way of life.But did you know it can save your life? when Jonah ended up inside the whale he told GOD,'i will sacrifice to you with..thanks-giving'(jonah2:9).And when he did God made the fish spit him up on dry land. Nothing demostrates real trust like thanking Him when you're in the throes of crisis.

Listen to this;A thankful heart does 2things: (1)It builds ur faith.The reason we can walk by faith n not by sight is beacause we know that regardless of the circumstances GOD is working on our behalf. What changes? Your focus changes!!instead of dwelling on d problem n getting discouraged,ur faith is released n u begin looking 2 God 4 solutions.

A believing heart will regognise n recieve those solutions faster than a doubting one.

(2)It restores life.Before raising lazarus from the dead Jesus looked up 2 heaven n said,'Father...thank you that u have heared Me'.Something amazing happens when you start thanking God in advance for saving,protecting n providing for u. Your faith begins to soar and you gain the confidence 2 commande those things in ur life that you thought were dead to live again..



Anonymous said...

Lovely article Linda!! got me thinking once more!!...

Cheers!! n stayblessed!


Anonymous said...

Life happens to us all, but we should not forget to lose sight of what is really important. In all give thanks to the Most High.

Nice write up, Linda, this is a good reminder in June to give thanks and do not wait till Dec.

Stay Blessed

Anonymous said...


is that man really smiling in the 2nd pic????, i finished serving 4 months ago,i got retained where i served but i've always wanted something better...i inted to quit this week and i've spent the last four months complaining to every one, fighting bouts of depression constantly and questioning God why all d interviews i've attended i havent been called....geez...we all want big miracles but we ignore the fact that the biggest miracle happens to us every day...we sleep and wake up..most times healthy...

i still intend to quit and return to Lag but i intend to be appreciate now..Lord Forgive Me!!!

princekay123 said...

That's a good piece. Sometimes I wonder why some people are just ungrateful. I have realised that the best way to live my life is to be contented with what I have; whether I have my lunch in Mr.Biggs or 'mama put', I'll be grateful to God. That is the source of happiness.
As for the is enough to prove that everybody must be grateful to God no matter one's condition.

Today's ranting said...

Hmmmmmm very deep!

Anonymous said...

Isn't that the best post I've ever read in your blog? It surely is, Pastor (Miss) Linda.


Anonymous said...

Nice post!

You have once more proved to me the reason why I love your blog!

Keep it on darling, Gob Bless xxx

Desola said...

Hi Linda,

Believe me your blog is one of the best, educating, inspiring that I've ever come across. I'm impress and often check your blog everyday for an update...I surely don't want to miss out on anything.
There are so many things we tend to take for granted in life especially thanking God for making us see another day every morning. A lot of people don't have it all and they praise God more than we do. Believe me that was a fantastic article.
I'm going to end up this writing by saying "Happiness comes from appreciating what you have and not what you are searching for". We should all appreciate and thank God for what we have and stop complaining about what we don't have.
Take care and all the best.

Anonymous said...

Hi Linda,
I started reading your blog regularly in March but i've never left a comment. However after reading this beautiful post today, i just HAD to say something. Your words are not just beautiful, they're very inspiring and thought-provoking too. There are so many things we take for granted in life because we get so caught up. For a couple of days now, i've been worrying over something that became very inconsequential after i read your post. I might not be where i want to be emotionally, but physically and mentally, i'm very grateful to God for where i am this minute. I'm going to take time out and just 'be' because i've got so much to be thankful for. God bless you, Linda.

Anonymous said...

hi Linda,anoda tot provoking issue,"Be grateful".Yeah,u said it all,we are always talking of wat we dont have and not thanking God for what He has done for us and I am guilty of all these.
I pray to have the heart of thanksgiving towards God and I hope evryone of us will learn from this man in pic,well said Linda,more power to ur elbow.

Jayjazzy said...

Yes we all need to take time and appreciate what we have and stop pursuing certain stuff. nice one, Linda

Anonymous said...

Linda you are the best!!!
You are such a wonderful least this write-up says so.We all really need to be grateful to God for what we have instead of focusing on what we lack.God bless you and be good.

Anonymous said...

Thx Linda, God bless you for this, i really needed it. x

Anonymous said...


Ejike Manny said...

When i was much younger some one told me that people never value what they have until they lose it. It didn't make much sence to me until i lost contact with a very good friend of mine called Bassey Bassey James in 1997. I still haven't got the contact till date. I've always been greatful for what ever i have especially my life and loved ones since then. People should just learn not to take what ever they have for granted.

Anonymous said...

Linda, nice write up. We all need to be reminded because sometimes no matter how religious you are, you tend to loose the plot too. I used to set standards for myself regularly, sometimes very high standards, in my own eyes i saw myself as a super woman, i believed i was determined, ambitious and well organized enough to achieve whatever i set my mind to. But my dear, God has so broken down my "high flying" wings that i cannot take a step without consulting Him through prayers. My new prayer is "Let your will be done" best prayer ever. Am more relaxed these days (i used to compete with everyone around me, even my parents in terms of achievements) and to finish it off He recently gave me a partner who is the true definition of "Let His will be done" this man, puts me in check always. God i just thank you for Everything.

Big Joemayocis said...

Hajiya Madam Linda, gaskiya ni ba san ki ba ama de the only time I feel I waste is d one I spend outside ur blog. Tnx 4 d sermon I really feel high n inspired. Keep up d good work.

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