Let us reflect and ask ourselves, “What do we need most right now?” Mind you, I am not talking about money. Because unless we’re of the financial ilk of Oprah and Bill Gates, we all can use more of that. What I am talking about are spiritual and emotional things that give us internal satisfaction. I’ll give you a hint: The Heart Matters.
I call these actions of the heart, the 3 G’s.
- God Consciousness
There is a tradition that states, “Be God conscious and you will find Him in front of you. Be God conscious and He will protect you…” Being conscious of God is acknowledging that our Creator has rights over us and respecting those rights. His being in front of us means He will guide us and strengthen our actions. Another gem from this tradition is, we should not view our past in a negative or regretful way.
In short, thinking or saying ‘what if’ regarding our past is not productive. We must focus on forward motion because that’s the direction we’re headed in, whether we like it or not. This life does not stagnate and we can’t go back. As one of the early scholars stated, “There are only 3 days in this life. Yesterday, you cannot go back and change it. Tomorrow, you are not promised it. And today, so work in it.”
This is what we have in life. So let’s strive every time we’re blessed to see another day to be present and purposeful in it. Also, being God conscious is one of the ways He protects us in all of our affairs. How He makes our actions bear fruit. How many times have we prayed for something and when we got it we can’t even track the means in which God gave it to us? This is another one of the tremendous benefits of respecting the rights of God in our lives.
Gratitude, as we discussed earlier this week, has 3 principles. To know that all blessings come from God, to use the blessings in ways that are pleasing to Him, and to speak about them. I don’t know why but whenever I speak about this I always think the last principle requires explanation.
There is a huge difference between bragging and expressing gratitude.Even the tone of the two are different. Bragging is a person always attributing the bounty to his or her efforts. As if they achieved it without God allowing them to get it. Also, one of the things many of us may not know about gratitude is, patience leads to it. Indeed we are living in a time when patience is an essential requirement. As the Prophet stated, “There is no greater gift that is more comprehensive than patience.” Because patience leads to gratitude, that’s one of the reasons it is the greatest gift.
When patience is practiced, especially during trials and difficulties, it allows us to see the flip side of things. Practicing patience affords us the opportunity to look at the good things in our lives, even when things aren’t going well, which in turn leads to us being grateful. Gratitude by definition is “The quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and return kindness.”
That brings me to the last G. Generosity. We’ve entered the season of giving and receiving gifts. Let us be mindful that generosity is not just monetary. Generosity comes in many forms. Smiles, words of encouragement, helping people deal with difficult situations, or just lending someone an ear when they need it, are all generous acts. I read a post on Instagram yesterday that stated, “Kindness is free. Don’t be stingy with it.” All of us have things we can offer of benefit to our family, friends, and the world. We just have to have an open heart and be willing. So let us cling, in a practical way, to the 3 g’s. God consciousness, gratitude, and generosity. Enjoy your holidays.
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