The Gratitude Commitment
October 2016

“The Gratitude Commitment,” New Era, October 2016, 47

The Gratitude Commitment

Alison R., Ontario, Canada


Last year around Thanksgiving, my family and I were sitting around the table, about ready to stuff ourselves full of warm, flavourful food. Starting our Thanksgiving tradition, my mom said, “Before we start to eat, let’s go around the table and say five things we’re grateful for. Don, would you like to start?”

“Sure thing,” my dad replied. “I’m grateful for you guys and your mom and that you’re always there for me even when work gets tough. I’m grateful for our home and that we’re all healthy and happy.” He turned to me. “What about you, Alison?”

“Um …” I said, thinking about how the year had flown by. It seemed like just yesterday that I was at last year’s Thanksgiving dinner, struggling to find five solid things for which I was grateful.

I thanked everyone in my family for being so loving and for each of their unique contributions in my life. This lifted my spirits for a few hours, but I soon felt like the gesture seemed inauthentic. Unsatisfied, I made a commitment to myself that I’d try to find reasons to be grateful every week instead of just around Thanksgiving.

This seemingly small decision made a huge difference in my life. I’m not sure how or if I’ve made a difference to my parents or siblings by being more grateful toward them, but I know I’ve been blessed. By committing to being more grateful in my life, I’ve been able to develop a stronger relationship with both my family and my Heavenly Father—something definitely worth feeling grateful for.