navigating today with wide open eyes

I just finished one of those books that you never realized how much you needed until you opened it.  Ever found one like that? The kind where the timing’s so perfect you feel heart string tugs as you read?

That’s what John Kralik’s 365 Thank Yous: The Year a Simple Act of Gratitude Changed My Life was for me on Sunday.

He’s honest. He doesn’t sugarcoat things. He just tells his story. Deeply. And it resonates.

You see I don’t have much patience for false Pollyannas anymore who insist we never be less than ultra-smiling with a hearty “Everything’s fine!” on our lips even as life’s knocking us down. Those people aren’t living in authenticity and honesty. I know because I used to try being one.

But I can relate to watching parts of life pull at you – that money issue, that relationship dilemma, that fading dream – but longing to rise up and focus on beauty and gladness and grace in spite of the mess.

That’s right where 365 Thank Yous met me.

jackie treehorns libraryKralik was living the depths of his own giant mess when he resolved to look for one person each day he could thank for touching his life. He wrote notes to everyone from family, to clients, to friends, to Starbucks workers. As he wrote, his eyes were opened to the grace that surrounded him even in the middle of some terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days.

Looking back near the end of his project, he recalls,

“Through the process of writing thank-you notes, I had developed a notion of being blessed with grace that was meaningful to me. And I see this grace and these blessings everywhere—in my sons, daughters, siblings, friends, and colleagues, . . . —where I had not seen it before.”

That’s some grace in unexpected places.

Well, maybe not so unexpected. Maybe just unseen places. Places we miss – until we open our eyes.

I’m praying for eyes wide open today to see the grace of God, especially the kind He’s pouring out from the people around me.

Janna, Grace Embracer

P.S. If you could thank anyone today, who would you write?

library photo credit


How beautiful! What an idea to not only think a thankful thought about someone but to write a personal note to them and telling them how they have made a difference in one’s life.
The more I think about it the more people I think of that I can do this for!

Janna Wright

Carol, that’s so true! It kinda makes me see people more and more that way too.

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