How can we be grateful in challenging times

How can we be grateful in challenging times? We all know that gratitude is transformative.  But these are challenging times indeed. While Covid drags on and on with all its attendant problems, restrictions, consequences, it sure seems hard to call up gratitude easily.  And what’s more, Thanksgiving in the US is coming in a couple of days, and there are widespread warnings based on the spikes in Covid cases after Canadian Thanksgiving in October.  Not to mention the chaotic aftermath of the US elections, injustice, inequity, greenhouse gases, money in politics… you know the drill.

Brother David

I would like to offer a lovely piece by Brother David Steindl Rast, as an answer to my question: How can we be grateful in these challenging times?

Not for everything that’s given to you can you really be grateful. You can’t be grateful for war in a given situation, or violence, or domestic violence, or sickness, things like that. There are many things for which you cannot be grateful. But in every moment, you can be grateful. For instance, the opportunity to learn something from a very difficult experience, how to grow by it, or even to protest, to stand up, and take a stand. That is a wonderful gift in a situation in which things are not the way they ought to be. So opportunity is really the key when people ask, can you be grateful for everything? No, not for everything, but in every moment.”   

Here is an all time favorite of mine, a video I am very grateful for. Thank you Louis Schwartzberg!


I am grateful that my two teen granddaughters and I are in a WhatsApp group and share clips and quotes we like. This week the theme is rainbows. I love the connection.

Here are some earlier posts about Thanksgiving and gratitude you might also enjoy.  Thanksgiving: Let Us All Be Grateful. Thanksgiving Revisited. Thanksgiving, Gratitude, and Happiness….Hmmmm.

What are you grateful for in this moment? And this one? And this one? I’d love to hear. We’re in this together.

Be well, calm, kind, stay safe, and savor every moment of this wild and precious life. 

Jill Schroder is the author of BECOMING: Journeying Toward Authenticity.  BECOMING is an invitation for self-reflection, and to mine our memorable moments for insights, meaning, andgrowth.  Check the website for a sample chapter, or see the reviews to get a flavor for the volume.  Follow me on Twitter, let’s be friends on Facebook. 🙂

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