Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Grateful Vs. Thankful

They told me I'd learn a lot when I became a parent, but no one prepared me for the depth of education I'd be receiving. Most days I'm barely keeping my head above water as the boys throw terms, definitions, and explanations my way faster than an MIT professor. 
My most recent course was in 'Gratefulness v. Thankfulness". I was pretty sure these were interchangeable, thesaurus buddies, and to a point they are. But my 40 inch tall professors gave me some insight I've been missing.
 Every day we take turns telling God something we are thankful for. While we began this time to offset discontentment and grumbling it's become a very looked forward to nightly event.  But as these little ones come before their Father with their "thankful for..." I hear a deeper emotion.
Gratefulness pours from their lips as they show their appreciation to God. The simple does not go unnoticed as they list off..."I'm thankful for clean water; not everyone has clean water. It makes us healthy and it's fun to play in. Thank you God that you've given us clean water every day."
Thankful is being pleased or relieved. Grateful is feeling or showing appreciation for what someone has done. So while I'm thankful I have three boys napping upstairs, those same sleepy heads nightly express their gratefulness for what God has done for them, including a pool with clean water to play in.
So what about you? What are you thankful for? A house, a job, the weather? What are you grateful for? I'm grateful God designed, planned, and knit together these three little men I have the honor to mother; and I'm grateful for the daily lessons I'm learning from the ones I thought needed me to teach them. :)

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