The holiday season is a time for gratitude. Even though it may not seem like it to everyone, there is much to be grateful for. For me, I have a wife whom I adore, a career I love, and the best poodle around. I am turning 54 this week and I have my health, so much so that I am nearly finished with a 400-mile bike route through beautiful Alabama terrain. The peaceful solitude of the ride gives me an opportunity to reflect and take in the beauty that surrounds me. I am grateful for all of it.
For some the holidays are a time of joy and thanksgiving, but for others it is filled with stress, painful memories, or loneliness. Focusing on the goodness in life can be challenging, especially when it may feel like everyone else around you is happy when you’re not. In these difficult times, it is important to find your own ray of joy. Identify an activity that brings you happiness. Maybe it is lunch with an old friend, a display of Christmas cards in your house, or some holiday caroling. Whatever it is, let the joy of the activity absorb into your soul.
Here are quotes to remind you of everything you have to be grateful for this holiday season:
1. “Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful.” - Norman Vincent Peale
2. “Hearts grow tender with childhood memories and love of kindred, and we are better throughout the year for having, in spirit, becoming a child again at Christmastime.” - Laura Ingalls Wilder
3. “The only blind person at Christmas time is he who has not Christmas in his heart.” - Helen Keller
4. “Happy, happy Christmas, that can win us back to the delusions of our childish days; that can recall to the old man the pleasures of his youth; that can transport the sailor and the traveller, thousands of miles away, back to his own fire-side and his quiet home!” - Charles Dickens
5. “Christmas is the season for kindling the fire of hospitality in the hall, the genial flame of charity in the heart.” - Washington Irving
6. “When we remember a special Christmas, it is not the presents that made it special, but the laughter, the feeling of love, and the togetherness of friends and family that made that Christmas special.” - Catherine Pulsifer
7. “What is Christmas? It is tenderness for the past, courage for the present, hope for the future. It is a fervent wish that every cup may overflow with blessings rich and eternal, and that every path may lead to peace.” - Agnes M. Pharo
8. “Gratitude is riches. Complaint is poverty.” - Doris Day
9. “Give yourself a gift of five minutes of contemplation in awe of everything you see around you. Go outside and turn your attention to the many miracles around you. This five-minute-a-day regimen of appreciation and gratitude will help you to focus your life in awe.” - Wayne Dyer
10. “Gratitude changes the pangs of memory into a tranquil joy.” - Dietrich Bonhoeffer
11. “I will live this day as if it were Christmas. I will be a giver of gifts and deliver to my enemies the gift of forgiveness; my opponents, tolerance; my friends, a smile; my children, a good example, and every gift will be wrapped with unconditional love.” - Og Mandino
12. “I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought, and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.” - G.K. Chesterton
13. “When we recall Christmas past, we usually find that the simplest things-;not the great occasions-;give off the greatest glow of happiness.” - Bob Hope
14. “Unless we make Christmas an occasion to share our blessings, all the snow in Alaska won't make it white.” - Bing Crosby
15. “Although Santa Claus and St. Nicholas have nothing to do with the true meaning of Christmas, many people do love the story about this man who did, in fact, give gifts to the poor and demonstrated for us a wonderful example for Christmas giving.” - Louise Bishop
16. “Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind. To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real spirit of Christmas.” - Calvin Coolidge
17. “We don't need more parties, or decorations, or gifts, or worries, or expectations to be added to Christmas. What we really need is some grace, for ourselves and others. And we need to love people.” - Susanna Foth Aughtmon
18. “Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.” - William Arthur Ward
19. “You pray in your distress and in your need; would that you might pray also in the fullness of your joy and in your days of abundance.” - Khalil Gibran
20. “Once a year, each Christmas, for a few days at least, we and millions of our neighbors turn aside from our preoccupations with life reduced to biology or economics or psychology and join together in a community of wonder.” - Eugene Peterson
21. “But everywhere throughout the world - throughout this war that covers the world - there is a special spirit that has warmed our hearts since our earliest childhood - a spirit that brings us close to our homes, our families, our friends and neighbors - the Christmas spirit of peace on earth, good will toward men. It is an unquenchable spirit.” - Franklin D. Roosevelt
22. “‘It came with out ribbons! It came without tags!
‘It came without packages, boxes or bags!’
And he puzzled three hours, till his puzzler was sore.
Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn't before!
‘Maybe Christmas,’ he thought, ‘doesn't come from a store.
‘Maybe Christmas...perhaps...means a little bit more!’”- Dr. Seuss
23. “Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus! It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias.” - The New York Sun