November 25, 2010

It`s a Choice

Lets dig right into it. Thanksgiving. Turkey, football, family, friends, food, and home. What a warm holiday to bring us all together at the table to share a meal. We celebrate being together. No wonder why so many people love Thanksgiving, they feel at home. What a great feeling of togetherness! This Thanksgiving lets share in abundance and unity.

I will be missing my second consecuative Thanksgiving. It is always sad to miss one one of my favorite holidays. To be away from family and friends. To be away from home. But this Thanksgiving, I am reminded that thanks giving is a choice.

This is not an origional thought, this notion came up in a conversation with Eduardo, one of our security guards in Ecuador. It was one of those late nights, sitting on a branch of our mango tree, outside the guard shack. We would just exchange stories. But mainly, he would talk and I would listen. Eduardo told me of his story, from struggling as a youth, to becoming a man. From selling clothes on the street, to getting a new job, to building a house and starting a family. He had a golden rule through the good times and the bad. His Golden Rule was gratitude at the end of the day. To count your blessings, give thanks to God, and share everything with those near to you.

Everyday he worked his hardest and whether he sold 2 shirts or 10, he ended the day with a choice. ¿Gratitude or Greed?

Evernight when we lie our heads down after a days work, we are faced with the same choice. Gratitude or Greed? Are we happy with what we have? Or once we get, what we want, do we want more?

It`s a choice. And I have witnessed that it does not matter how much you have. I have seen overwhelming gratitude from people living in cane houses that are half the size of my garage. And I have witnessed overwhelming greed from those living in mansions. Yes, it goes both ways as well! It comes down to not what you have in your house, but who you are in your house. Thats the choice.

I want to leave you my personal reflection from parable of the Multiplication of the Loaves and Fish that I believe tells the miracle of Thanksgiving... There was a large crowd. Hungry. Tired. Then there were 5 loaves of bread and 3 fish- Apparently insufficient food for everyone. But then there was a revolutionary amongst the crowd. He instructed the crown to unite, sit down, and be together. First, he gave thanks for the little food there was. Next, he distributed all he had, displaying the miracle of sharing.

Now I don`t believe Jesus had a wand and transformed 5 loaves of bread and 3 fish into a giant feast. Matter cannot be created or destroyed. It can only be transformed. So had did so little transform into so much? By sharing. This parable is the miracle of sharing. Everyone at that gathering must have had something. No matter how little individually, if the whole group gave up everything and shared it with the community, there would be an abundant feast.

Is this not the world`s situation right today? When 40,000 chlidren die of starvation everyday, we are tempted to say we live in scarcity. But what if we could come together, unite, and share as equals? Bob Marley had an insight that I like... Unity must have to start now, because I mean, how long would we have to suffer, to learn these things, that we must be united?

Thanks giving is a choice. Every day we decide. We can be greedy and hoard, we can be grateful and share. Its a choice.

This Thanksgiving, lets celebrate abundance, sharing, and unity.

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