By Debbie Herbeck
We live in a culture that constantly tells us that life is all about us—our fulfillment, our pleasure, our success; we deserve it all. As women we also constantly fight to believe that we really are good enough. As we approach Thanksgiving, St. Francis’ gives us some good advice.
Take a moment to think of everything you're proud of about yourself and your life. Then ask yourself if you would have any of this without God's permission and aid? Give credit where credit is due; praise and thank Him, not yourself.
–St. Francis of Assisi
First of all, be affirmed. Give yourself permission to feel good about yourself—who you are—your accomplishments and hard work, and the hopes, dreams and goals you are pursuing. You are an amazing woman who is loved, valued and cherished simply because you bear the image and likeness of your Creator. But never forget that it can never just be about you. Your beauty, intelligence, gift and talents, your “net worth”, are all gifts from God, given to you to use as a good steward to reflect His great glory.
Thanksgiving is more than just an American holiday filled with traditions, feasting and football. Thanksgiving (or giving thanks) is what every Christian must give to God, not just one Thursday a year, but each day as we draw our breath and count our blessings.
A disposition of gratitude helps us take our eyes off ourselves and focus not only on God but also on others. This long weekend is a perfect opportunity to love those closest to us—those around our table, in a messy kitchen, and in awkward or tense conversations.
How can you love? Listen, serve, offer to help, be cheerful, put down your phone and just be present.
Finally, take the advice of one of the greatest saints and "Give credit where credit is due." Stop and remember that everything you are, you have, and hope to be, all comes from God.
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