I've seen a lot of my friends making daily status updates with things they are thankful for, such as family, friends, jobs, etc. I'm thankful for all of those things. I tend to like to add my own twist, so I'm going to list what I would consider my second tier of things for which I am genuinely thankful, assuming items like God, Family, Job, Country, etc. would be the top tier.
I'm also thankful for (not at all in any order):
- Missionaries. These folks spend a lot of time in lonely places and aren't encouraged nearly as often as they ought to be. They have my respect and admiration. In fact, if it weren't for mission-minded people, none of us would have a church to call "home." Every congregation is in some way a result of a person/group of people dreaming, praying, and sharing. We need more people like this.
- Remote Controls. I still think it's fantastic that I can sit on my couch, like a king on his throne, and command the television to do what I want, all without having to walk over and move anything. No, it isn't new technology, but I can't imagine life without it. It also still excites me to lock and unlock my car from a distance, especially in the rain.
- Online Banking. I absolutely love that I really only seldom have to fool with balancing a checkbook or physically writing any checks. Using debit cards and tracking spending online has made my life considerably easier.
- Fruit Tea. I don't know who came up with the stuff, but when made well, there's just nothing like it.
- Erasmus. He put together the first Greek version of the New Testament, which enabled people to start translating it into their own languages. I'm also thankful for all the other people who were shamed and killed in the effort to get the Bible into the langages of common people everywhere. It has changed the world.
- Experience. I'm thankful to have a few more years of life under my belt. I have learned much in the rise of social media about the importance of watching one's words. I spend more time on Facebook holding my tongue than I do anything else. I've learned that people do pay close attention to what you say and how you say it. The more I've given attention to these kinds of skills, the easier and more effective my life has been. And overall, I've gotten better at it, and I'm thankful to at least feel like I'm getting better.
- Fair-Minded Criticism. I've learned that in all critics, there is at least some element of truth in there somewhere. When someone has been able to suggest to me how I can be a better person/preacher/teacher, and they've meant it with my best interests at heart, it's been good for me. There are often perspectives that I'm blind to, and when someone has pointed out to me another way to view things, whether on this blog, FB, or somewhere else, it's made me better.
- Smart phones. I think the ability to use GPS on the go is especially wonderful. Smart phones have improved my life in tons of ways, and I expect they'll only keep getting better.
- Goals. My dad taught me that you should always have something you're excited about and can look forward to. For him, it was crucial that we have a family vacation in planning every year so that we could always be working towards it. This mentality has helped me to finish school, to get books published, and to be a more optimistic person. Goals are good things. I try to always keep something in my future that requires me to work towards it.
Is there anything else you're especially glad we have in this world that wouldn't be in the usual lists of stuff you're thankful for?