Tag: gratitude

Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Quote of the Day: Sacrificing Virgins to Volcanoes

 

“All around us, humans are not change agents, but victims buffeted by impersonal deities who must be appeased through acts of sacrifice. In principle, there is no distinction between the island barbarian who sacrifices virgins to the volcano and the modern American who self-sterilizes to ‘save the planet.’ Both are expressions of the human desire to suffer in order to appease a larger, all-important ‘force.’ And both are ways in which otherwise intelligent people adopt pagan worldviews in order to come to peace with their place in the world.” — Shaya Cohen (aka @iwe), The Torah Manifesto

The world is filled with people who wear their helplessness, victimization, and virtue-signaling as badges of honor. They have given up their free will as their contribution to the myth that the earth is falling apart and only through their sacrifices can it be saved. Their growing abundance and success, instead of filling them with gratitude and motivation, overwhelm them with guilt and teeth-gnashing. They elevate their impact on the planet so that they end up becoming their own gods, thinking that they can make the world better by giving up those things they have earned and created. Their surrender to true Power is not possible, since they have made themselves into powerless deities.

Instead, they can choose to leave the mythical cave of suffering and safety, and emerge into an existence that feeds their power and creativity, improving the world and serving others.

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Dear Ricochetti, Thank you for your support and encouragement. There are no words to adequately convey my gratitude to all who have helped me in my time of need, both financially and emotionally. Your prayers have been my strength, and your patience with my plight has given me hope. If things get better, I will […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Member Post

 

If you’ve been following this past week of daily posts, you know that my husband and I had to endure a trial for a case that has lasted over six years. I want to thank @arahant for listing the post links and I have pasted them in at the end. I said I had no […]

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This is an update to the post I put up earlier, Until We Meet Again. In that post, I stated that I could not afford to keep my Ricochet account. Well, God sent an anonymous Angel to pay for my membership, so I get to stay! I have no idea who my Angel is, but […]

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Milk – $1.99 1 pound of Beans (dry) – $1.49 Bread – $1.10 ½ Dozen Eggs – $0.99 Total – $5.57 Not long ago, the items on that grocery list would have cost half as much. When I was little, Mom and Dad would gather my sister and me into the car, and we would […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. We Just Create Our Own Family

 

At Thanksgiving time, we experience a hint of sadness in our home. Our parents have passed away; we have no relationship with my sister or brother or my husband’s daughter and grandchildren. We do have his brother in our lives and he was with us this Thanksgiving. Other family is scattered around the country in a way that discourages a shared holiday celebration.

But years ago, Jerry and I created our own family. We have an “open table” at Thanksgiving where people who don’t have someone to celebrate with are invited and they can bring friends. This year was extremely special. Except for Jerry’s brother (who helped us cook and clean up!) we had seven neighbors. At dinner this year, we declared ourselves “family.”

Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Gratitude

 

“‘This time I will thank God’ and she called him Judah.” Leah references her unhappiness with how her husband feels about her when naming her first three sons. But for her fourth son, she becomes the first Biblical character to express gratitude.

Jews (the name derives from Judah) are the people who thank. Or at least we should be. The first words we say each morning are “thank you.” On festivals the verse we recite most often is “Thank you God for it is good, for His kindness is forever.”

Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Gratitude: For Michael, or Why I’ll Still Be Here a Week from Now

 

I’m grateful for my family.

Now, I can’t write the sort of post that some of you can, and perhaps will, about a close-knit family and a wonderfully stable upbringing with intimate family ties and regular family celebrations. A friend of mine grew up this way, and when we have lunch, as we do a couple of times a year, it seems there are always three or four more great-nieces and nephews, and someone else is getting married or having a baby, and she’s just attended a massive reunion somewhere on the East coast. My family wasn’t like that at all. We were far-flung at a time when communication, other than by what came to be known as ‘snail mail,’ was often impossible, and was always complicated, expensive, and slow.

What I cherish in my family, which is full of them, are the madcaps and eccentrics. Aunty Betty, who, once she became a centenarian, spent her declining years in a torrid love affair with her imaginary boyfriend, John, the King of China. Uncle Arthur, who, at the age of 90, made the most of his church raffle winnings by borrowing his friend, the Bishop of Worcester’s, helmet and leathers and living one of his dreams by taking off for a ride on the back of a Honda Gold Wing. My mother, whose spontaneous, inventive, and bawdy lyrics for popular songs I still can’t get out of my head, even now. Our very own Miss Chips, Aunty Pat (93, may she live forever), who still gets hundreds of letters and cards every year from the thousands of pupils she taught when they were six years old, who’ve never forgotten their first teacher, and who visit her whenever their travels take them through Birmingham.

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Note: I posted the below essay on my personal site this past Sunday, the 4th. Reposted here with some family encouragement. It would have been a good candidate for the “Gratitude” writing assignment, but the anniversary of his passing was more fitting: My father passed six years ago, today, after a long battle with lymphoma. […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Advent Gratitude: The Liturgical Year Begins as Darkness Grows

 

shutterstock_251257738“the glory is fallen out of / the sky the last immortal / leaf / is // dead and the gold / year / a formal spasm / in the // dust / this is the passing of all shining things” … into the night so dark no night could be darker than, the cold so cold, no cold could be colder than; the journey through “The mile still left when all have reached / Their tether’s end: that mile / Where the Child lies hid.”

The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness does not overmaster it. But neither has light overmastered the darkness: lights do not shine in darkness unless darkness predominates; when there’s mostly light, we see the darkness as residual shadows, not as the ambient state.

Darkness is in one sense the enemy of God, of Christ who is Light, whose dawn at Easter irreparably shatters the dark of death and hell, the light of the eighth, eternal day, shining for all days before and after:

Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. A Gratitude Bouquet for my Husband

 

kissShort and sweet, dear Ricochet friends.

Having read your essays this past month as they revealed lives of courage, hardship, mind-boggling talent, empathy, humor and love – well – I’m grateful – and humbled.

So let me be brief. My husband saved my life. My gratitude for his love and support has bloomed beyond my imaginings as the years have passed. We were young and from very different family cultures. As the second of seven children beneath a very brilliant and driven older sister — I was rather lost, directionless and drifting, I shared an apartment with her and my kid brother during my second year of college. On a Saturday afternoon my big sister took me on a tour of the med school anatomy lab. My future husband and I met over a cadaver. Love at first sight.

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The Good News that Jesus Christ was killed and conquered death to take away the sin of the world is the central idea of Christianity. Even more—this was done for you. Church bodies, at least in stated doctrine, are nearly unanimous in recognizing this act of reconciliation between God and Man as a free gift of […]

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’Lo Lord, It’s good to speak with you again. The world has spun around since our last talk. But here I am in the early morning. The kettle’s on to boil for the tea. Miss O’Malley’s on the bench beside me. The wife’s asleep, of course. She never was a fanatic to see the sun […]

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Every weekday Frank Wheeler, age 30, takes a commuter train into the city, where he works regular hours at his office before returning to his Connecticut suburb, with its grassy lawns and nicely-spaced, comfortable homes. There his beautiful wife April is cooking a dinner she did not have to shoot, pluck, or skin, which will […]

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I wasn’t going to contribute this month. I’m task-saturated, sleep deprived (and sobriety deprived, while I”m “not sleeping,” so it’s on me), harried, juggling multiple balls made out of glass and filled with nitroglycerine. Shouldn’t have worried about it; this post wrote itself. Preview Open

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I am thankful for my privilege. Privilege, in the sense of “a special advantage… posessed by a particular person…” [dictionary definition]. I am thankful for having had the privilege of knowing my uncle Alan, a logging contractor who had been a B-17 bomberdier in his youth. Uncle Alan taught me grace without condemnation in his […]

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Things were getting a bit tense at the college in 2008-2009. The students didn’t notice it so much, but the faculty and staff kept passing around rumors that the administration was concerned about the financial situation, and people didn’t know what that meant. Northwestern College is a small, private, 4-year Christian liberal arts college here in northwest […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Talk on the train

 

Evenings in LA, I’m on the metro for about two hours. I look around at people–there’s now & then something that would pop the pennies off the eyes of dead Irishmen, as the poet said… I go on with my reading in the longer lonelier stretches, where there’s no light by which to see the city by night. I wonder, every transfer, at the repairs schedule screwing with the digital displays that are supposed to display train schedules–I wonder, too, at the people who do not read them, who are apparently innocent of any concern for the work done on the lines.

The other evening, my long ride to shelter started with an English young woman smiling without any shyness and complimenting my scarf; the elder gentleman next whom I took a seat also remarked I was looking dapper. So that’s some small thing to be grateful for–of course, I thanked them. I had had to chase down two trains. The first didn’t even stop in the station, it just went away, to repairs, without any signals. At first I thought I must have scared it off–because of the athletic feat of chasing it down, of course. All the excitement then vanished after those compliments, we all settled down for the long ride to LA in comity.

Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. Conjuring Gratitude Out of Nothing

 

shutterstock_432970087I spend my Saturdays working as a therapist at a behavioral hospital, primarily serving detoxing heroin addicts and suicidal teenagers. I often ask myself what I’m still doing there. It doesn’t pay very well, and it’s not a very tightly-run organization. There’s very little coordination. Staff always try to pass off problems they don’t know how to solve themselves. The patients are always at a low point in life — that’s why they’re there, after all — and a lot of them take their misery out on you. Some days, we practically make the schedule up as we go along. The atmosphere is frequently one of tension, desperation, and fear of what will happen next. Staff overworked and overwhelmed and patients about to snap.

I stay for a few reasons. Inertia, I suppose. The bonds you build with colleagues when you spend long hours in close quarters under stressful circumstances. A little extra cash. Free cafeteria meals with more food groups than whatever I would cook at home. In my more self-congratulatory moments, I like to tell myself I’m also doing something good for people, being there for them through the worst of times. Hoping that while their internal worlds might be torment, and their current surroundings aren’t so pleasant either, the time I spend with them might provide some small comfort or ray of hope.

I also rather enjoy my status at the place. Since I only work one day a week as a PRN employee, I’m not held accountable for much of anything. I never see the bosses. I can essentially show up and leave whenever I want. My coworkers are always happy to see me, not only because of my winning personality, but because anything I do is something off their plate (even if I don’t work very hard). All the real responsibility goes to the full-time staff so, if I encounter anything hard I can just say, “Hmmm, you’d have to ask the weekday therapist about that.” Even if something bad happened and they let me go, it wouldn’t seriously disrupt my life. So despite the stressful setting, there’s an odd sort of freedom about my limited role.