Today's Thankful Thursday is going to be a little different. Instead of a list of things I'm thankful for this week, it's going to be a little Food for Thought. Thankfulness doesn't have to be just about the specifics. It can be about the Big Picture.
I receive a monthly newsletter that contains, among other things, poems and essays. The June edition of this newsletter included a Father's Day tribute to a man (Papa John) who really understood thankfulness. This essay was written by Papa John's wife - Annette Mennen Baldwin. I'm going to quote a part of that essay here. But first here's the set up. Papa John is the step-father of Todd who is the father of Buddy.
Once when Todd's son was complaining about how unfair
life was, Todd sat back and talked with him. "Some people's
glasses are half full, some are half empty, but Buddy your
glass is always bone dry. Why is that?" No answer was
forthcoming. So Todd explained to him that it was all in
attitude. "Look at your Papa John. Each day he wakes
up happy. He doesn't complain. He does what
he has to do, and he always has something positive to
say to everyone. Life isn't always easy for him. He just makes
it look that way. It's an attitude, Bud. You need to learn that
life will be tough sometimes. Other times it will be good.
Life is how you perceive it. That's one of the most
important lessons your Papa John taught me.
Think about it.
I have been thinking about it. Since early June. I think Papa John sounds like an amazing man who is leaving a wonderful legacy of a life well-lived for his family. I've been working on Thankful Thursday for a while now as a means of bettering myself. I now see that having a thankful outlook can be so much more than simply noticing the little things. It goes beyond just improving myself. A thankful attitude can serve as a model for others. I really hope that I can be someone's Papa John. I can't think of a better legacy. Or living a better (or more meaningful) life. A grateful attitude and perspective. I'm thinking about it. And working on it.
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