I know that the times are tough and life gets rough, but be grateful. If you are able to read this, be grateful for your vision. If you’re able to type a comment, be grateful for your ability to touch. If you have on headphones rocking out to your favorite music, be grateful for your ability to hear.
I’ve noticed that we as a society have become so ungrateful. For the most part, most Americans have a roof over their head and at least some bread in their stomachs. We all know that there are plenty of people around the world who don’t even have a home or food to eat on a daily basis. We say that we know these things but we never act upon the information in which we say we have. I say this because Americans as a whole have become the most wasteful society. We waste anything and everything that we get our hands on, especially food. But my goal isn’t to just bring awareness to world hunger, but to bring hunger to your soul to want to be grateful for everything you have and don’t have.
This epiphany of how ungrateful we are as people was revealed to me one day while riding the metro home from work. I really don’t like to wear headphones in public. To me they take away the natural harmony of life. When I do put them on they are to ignore everything and everyone. (Be honest a lot of times we wear our headphones to drown out other people.) This day I put them on in order to do just that, drown out everybody because I felt like I had a hard day at work; being that my profession is somewhat of a customer service industry. God instantly knocked me down from my high horse, when I noticed the man behind me boarding the train was in a mobile wheelchair. He was in business attire and had a briefcase on the side of his chair. It looked like he was headed home from a long day of work just like the rest of us. Only difference was, I was standing and able to walk. He was paralyzed from the neck down. He was controlling his wheelchair with a white stick that he wielded with his mouth. He also typed on his phone with this very same stick. It put a tear to my eye when I realized how self-absorbed I was being by putting headphones on, just to ignore other humans.
After I saw him, the feeling of guilt and ungratefulness filled my heart when I realized how much I was complaining to myself. In my head I was having conversations with myself like, “Really Cliff? Was your day that hard? Did you jump out of bed and dress yourself this morning? Are you not standing six feet tall with full health and mobility? Oh! You are, huh! Well be quiet then!” But you might ask, “Cliff what does that have to do with wearing headphones?” To answer that question, I’ll ask you one back. Do you put your headphones in your own ears? More than likely, you do. The man in the wheelchair, who is not able to move his hands and feet, wakes up every day and goes to work. He doesn’t walk to the metro wearing his headphones every day. To be honest I don’t know how he gets to the metro, but I do know that his times probably are tough and his life may be rough but he still pushes through it every day.
A lot of people these days love to wear their headphones wherever they go. Headphones have been a major a component in the dehumanization of America’s people. We are no longer grateful for being able to speak and communicate with each other. In a sense we have become ungrateful towards our own and other people’s lives. We like to complain about things in our lives that are within our power to change. Most of us Americans walk around with an “I deserve better because it’s me” attitude. We need to learn to appreciate the simple day-to-day things that we are capable of doing.
To be grateful is to be humble. Maybe your clothes aren’t the fliest and your shoes aren’t the freshest, but at least you have some. That is a good enough reason to be grateful. To be able to accept the things that you don’t have shows a great deal of humility. One thing I do, no matter who is around, is pick up pennies. It not only makes me kneel before men, it is a smart and economical thing to do. Never be above anything or anyone. Because the moment you’re feeling all high and mighty on that horse of yours, will be the moment the real High and Mighty knocks you right back down.
One day when you are out in the public, take the time to people watch. It is a beautiful thing to be able to see and appreciate the beauty of people. So go appreciate life by being grateful that we even exist. For humility brings on greatness.
Thanks for reading and be great!