When I was young, the world seemed so safe. Murders occurred, sure, but always to someone else, and almost always far away. I would read about famine, but I was never hungry. I heard about people who were ill or disabled, but I could freely play. For these blessings, the young person that I was gave thanks.
So what is there to give thanks for? Plenty.
Since then, I’ve grown older, and the horrors of this world have alighted closer to home, sometimes far too close. I lost my son to a youthful suicide. Nearly all of the friends with whom I adventured in my prime have gone on to their next adventures. I’ve faced ruin and recovery, wreck and regret, and the daily news is like a Groundhog Day rerun of a tour of Hades.
So what is there to give thanks for?
Plenty. A very large contingent of mankind has mobilized to douse the fires of hatred. Thank you to the many organizations, such as STAND, which have mobilized to fight back. I thank all who stand with them. I thank all of my Christian friends, Jewish friends, Latter-day Saint friends, Muslim friends, Sikh friends, indeed I thank all who practice their religion with love and charity in order to make this world a better place. I thank the many who, with or without religious reinforcement, devote their days to servicing those in need. Lastly, I thank the artists who reach deep into their spiritual and creative wellsprings to bring forth their vision of beauty to uplift the world. It’s quite a team. It’s quite a challenge.