A Simple Prayer & Permission To Be Ungrateful Sometimes

When my children were in pre-school they said a little prayer before snack time:

Thank you for the food we eat,

Thank you for the world so sweet,

Thank you for the birds that sing,

Thank you God for everything.

Over the past couple of years I have incorporated that poignant set of reminders into my closing yoga meditation.  You might think it would have been jarring during a nasty divorce to contemplate those sentiments, but they were very comforting; especially, the last line.  It served as a reminder that everything was truly happening for my highest good, even though, some days, it was mighty hard to wrap my mind around that concept.

Actually, each line is an exercise in remembering what’s really important:

Thank you for sustenance, of all kinds: a friend’s hug as well as the food we literally eat.

Thank you for the sweetness inherent in most things and the ability to actively seek it.

Thank you for nature, bird song, music, the sound of a comforting voice.

Thank you for whole wide world and everything in it.  The good, bad, beautiful, and ugly, just as it should be, even if it’s incomprehensible.

Of course, there are days when merely thinking of this prayer will annoy you to distraction, and I am not suggesting you use it then. Sometimes, you have to be ungrateful.  I know that’s not a mind-set you’re encouraged to adopt, but there really are days when thinking you have to be grateful is enough to send you ’round the bend.  Just let yourself feel ungrateful at those moments. Trust me, they will pass. When they do, say this little prayer and see if it doesn’t re-center your priorities and help your perspective.

Copyright Nicole S. Urdang

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Nicole Urdang

Nicole S. Urdang, M.S., NCC, DHM is a Holistic Psychotherapist in Buffalo, NY. She holds a New York state license in mental health counseling and a doctorate in homeopathic medicine from the British Institute of Homeopathy.