Carlyle Fielding Stewart III

Writings on Democracy, Social Justice, and Religion

“Counting our Blessings.”

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I heard a preacher once say “the most practiced arithmetic in the world should be counting our blessings.”

He’s right!

We should count our blessings each day, for indeed when all is said done, many of us are still in the plus column when it comes to our health, happiness, peace and personal prosperity.

Though much has been taken much still abides……(Tennyson)

Life is not always what we want it to be.

Life is often what we make it. And if in the transactions of life we fall short of our dreams for now, and if breath and strength still abide somewhere in our mortal bodies and the deeper recesses of our hearts and souls, such dreams can be pursued even amid the tempests of our earthly trials and troubles.

It is hard sometimes to see the light, to behold the fresh splendor of the morning dew amid morning glories, to feel the fresh rain pelting our faces, to gingerly clasp its clear waters in our hands, to see the suns rising and its setting, to notice anew the granulated particles of bread broken in our hands and to sense eternity in grains of sand.(Blake)

It is hard sometimes to feel joy when there is so much pain; to feel the fresh rushes of humanity still calling us together as one after we have blistered, scorned and pierced one another.

We long for those places of healing, those solitary places of comfort and understanding where we can just be without questions, where we can just live and breathe without doubt’s intrusions and their attending denunciations, where we can just be-that’s all-just be, devoid of the imperial evaluations which ritually bid us woefully insufficient, frailties and follies and all.

We long to see heaven on earth. We long for a world that speaks of heaven’s wonders and powers amid the lengthening shadows of our days on earth; a world in which there is no more pain, war, hatred, suffering and death; a world where everyone is a person; where every person is a child of God worthy of their creator, loved by their creator, and protected by their creator and those of their fellow co-created.

We must count our blessings and keep counting them.

This is hard to do when we experience and count in life so much loss and so much grief and we continually size our lives only in the loss column.

When the flood and ebb tides of tears have come and gone, still remaining is a constant call to renewal and restoration of our humanity; it is heaven’s call upward and onward to inscribe something new upon the sands of time and its awaiting, untrammeled shores.

We must take time to see what we will still have, what still abides and what blessings we still need and give them away to those who need them.

Watch them and count them this thanksgiving season. Take hold of them and share them so that others can have them too.

The greatest arithmetic of all is counting our blessings.

When I count the many people who have blessed my life, and those that I have been blessed to be able to bless, the “calculus” is longer arithmetic but now is multiplication.

What we give in love increases its value by the lives it touches.

Count your blessings this season. Be your blessings and share them too.

God bless you all.

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