Busy-ness…That is this malaise of the moment. We all have to be busy. How sad. Apparently when people are dying the most commonly expressed regret is “I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.” What is the virtue of being so busy? Please tell me. No don’t. You’re probably too busy to tell me; I understand.
Yesterday I went to the offices of BBC Sussex and did a mini gig with Emily Jeffery on the early Sunday morning God Slot, which is always great fun. I used to think that it was only listened to by two old gentlemen in Newhaven and their pet cat. In fact I was completely wrong. Loads of people listen to it as I have since discovered. One of the things one has to do on the God Slot is a 60 second sermon, which is not easy, but a good discipline. This one was about gratitude and it went like this:
One of the strange things about feeling a bit down is that if one sets out to thank somebody there is something about being gracious that often makes one feel better. Expressions of warmth work both ways. Saying ‘thank you’ is lovely for both the giver and the receiver… Eight years ago, I was struggling to write a prayer of gratitude for my prayer book, and I was feeling quite exasperated, and some words came to me that I turned into an odd little prayer. With the passing of time I completely forgot that prayer until six months ago when I was at a festival and was asked to read something sacred, short and light-hearted. I hastily searched my little book and found that prayer and read it out. Shortly afterwards a total stranger came up to me and completely stunned me by saying: “thank you so much, that prayer really does it for me, I have it stuck on my fridge door…” The prayer’s called ‘Thanks’ and it goes like this:
Today I give thanks
Whether I feel like it
It’s in the giving of thanks
I feel better…
It’s in the movement of a smile
I feel like smiling…
It’s in the singing of a song
I cheer up…
It’s in the laughing of a laugh
My troubles melt…
Today I give thanks
And realise the world is amazing… after all.
And thank you so much, for reading this blog… and for being you.