I love this picture for several reasons. First, I am a huge fan of Winnie-the-Pooh. Second, the quote by Hans Christian Anderson is amazing. Last post we spoke about changing perspective. Can you imagine viewing a lot of our everyday things as miracles? To some of you that may seem like a stretch, but really it is not. Take the simple act of eating. Food grows using the power of the sun. It is composed of complex molecules of all different sorts. We mash it up using our teeth and swallow it. Somehow, inside of our stomach it is transformed from a piece of broccoli, or in my case a slice of deluxe pizza, to a source of energy that powers all of the processes in our body. This occurs without us having to learn or do a single thing. Pretty amazing if I must say so myself.

Here is another aspect of miracles, being grateful. When you think of the things mentioned above, they might seem like the basic items of life. It is true that everyone should have these items. It is also true, that the vast majority of people on this planet do not. If you are reading this, it is assumed you have an internet connection in some fashion. Think of the miracles of that! You can access knowledge of the ages in the palm of your hand, in the case of a cell phone. When I was young you had to go to the library and search through volumes of books called encyclopedias. Today you just talk into your phone and access Wikopedia in seconds. 100 years ago, electricity and running water was just beginning to be the norm. Today, in places like war-torn Ukraine, and many rural villages in Africa it is still a luxury. Many of the things we can take for granted can be ripped from our lives in the blink of an eye. As I write this, the western part of the United States is being subjected to a terrible winter storm. 40 people have already lost their lives and thousands more are without power.

This is not meant to be a doom and gloom post. Just a poignant reminder that many of the basic services will become a luxury if they are taken away. A mother in Kyiv would give anything to have a safe roof over her head and a place to raise her children without the fear of a bomb falling on them. Do you have that? Be grateful. Somewhere in western New York, a family was wishing they had heat to be able to stay healthy and enjoy the holidays. Did you have that? Be grateful. There is a tired clichΓ© that we do not know what we have until it is gone. For most of us, that is uncomfortably true. As the year draws to a close, I invite all of us to consider the ordinary things of our lives and how miraculous they truly are. Think of what many of us take for granted that others would be so grateful to have.

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