Giving Thanks

Wear gratitude like a cloak and it will feed every corner of your life. ~Rumi

Every day we're presented with opportunities to make choices about what we focus on. Is it the evil presenting itself in ISIS, or in the fear-driven mistreatment of others we are seeing in regards to refugees? What about smaller examples of the "bad" in our experience-- that driver who cut us off on the road? Or do we see and have time to appreciate the humanity and the grace showing up in a small child taking the hand of another, or in the stranger who smiles as they pass us in the street? How about an awareness of those working tirelessly right in the middle of conflict to uncover the tolerance and unity that exists there? Consciously choosing to see the good, and to see how the good is powerful and present, is an integral part of building and bolstering peace.Rogers          But how do we do that? Being an informed global citizen at this moment means there is an awful lot of evil to look at. How do smaller scale examples of goodness and grace gain a foothold amid the fear or the anger we might feel? Gratitude -- feeling thankful -- for the good we do notice, or even for the IDEA of good, is a huge part of seeing it more and more. This time of year, the thought of gratitude comes strongly to the surface as we in the United States gather to collectively give thanks - to celebrate Thanksgiving.Gratitude underpins all of the work at Euphrates. Each of our meetings begin with gratitude, and even in the face of challenges we set aside time to call out and recognize what is going well. And there is much Euphrates has to feel thankful for this year! Unprecedented growth both programmatically and financially, the participation in our Chapters Program from people across the world, interest and engagement with the words we write and publish, and solid proof that bringing change-makers to this country to share their stories does indeed bolster their work back in the Middle East have all been such wonderful advancements.We're grateful to you, our readers and our network. You are deep thinkers and seekers of good, as well as generous donors and excellent spokespeople for the ideas of listening, unity, bridging divides, and peace.Let's continue to work collectively to become informed, to seek out, tell, and share inspiring stories, and then to let that inspiration transform the way we view conflict and peace.Wishing you all a wonderful Thanksgiving, filled with the acknowledgment of good, both big and small, in our lives.

Images thanks to: Jannali After Dark, and Zazzle.