Photo Prayer 2022-17 -- Give Thanks One Hundred Times A Day

Giving thanks is a cure for depression. So claims my friend. At one time in her life she became so severely depressed she was institutionalized. Then she took up the practice, every day, of giving thanks for one hundred things, listing them. No gratitude was too small or too large. If she was thankful for air or light or sound or quiet or water or food or just being alive, each was added to her gratitude list. In this way, giving thanks became a habit. She began looking forward to what was next, wondering what new pleasing thing was about to enter her life.

Am I simplifying her slow cure? Am I ignoring the many people and other practices that helped? Of course! But this one practice appeals to me, me a sunny Polyanna. If anything, I am too often unreasonably optimistic and cheerful. What’s the opposite of deep depression? Is there a clinical name for it? Pathological Euphoria? Acute Polyannism? I certainly would not want to fall into that debilitating mindset. Even so, I think I will take the risk, just for one day, of giving thanks for one hundred things. Hopefully it will not put me over the edge. But when? What day? Let me pull up my calendar. Look at that! As it turns out, next Thursday is a day called Thanksgiving. What a coincidence! Thank God for coincidences!

Photo of a cornucopia on the altar at the Episcopal Church of Saints Andrew and Matthew,
Wilmington, Delaware, an arrangement by Flowers by Tino.
Photo and text copyright 2022 by Danny N. Schweers.
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