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Giving thanks for all the things we do not have
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We give thanks every day. But Thanksgiving is a special time to be thankful for the many blessings we have.

It’s also a time to be thankful for the things we do not have:

• aches and pains that limit our luxury of movement and our ability to enjoy physical freedom;

• stars twinkling above us when we go to sleep at night because that means there’s a roof over our head keeping us safe and comfortable;

• a repressive government that controls every aspect of our life, from limiting the number and gender of children you can have to rationing what food you can have or even letting you grow vegetables and fruit but are not allowed to eat any of it;

• long, long wait – if you are a Catholic – to have a priest offer Mass and give communion at a church near you because of the shortage of priests;

• a dictator for a leader with the power to kill you without reason, or to kill all your freedoms — to worship God without threat of annihilation, to speak freely without being apprehended and thrown in prison for what you believe in that is contrary to authority, and those are just the very tip of the iceberg;

• tears in your eyes and heaviness in your heart because someone has deeply hurt your feelings through no fault of your own;

• bombs and IEDs exploding around you, which means you are living in a time of peace, in a peaceful environment where love abounds, or at least, there’s more love than hate surrounding you and your loved ones.

No matter how stark and hopeless is the situation, there are still plenty to be thankful for each and every moment of our life. I am thankful for every minute blessing from God, and that includes all the things I don’t have. As the Good Book says in 1 Thessalonians 5:18, “Be thankful in all circumstances.”