An attitude of gratitude makes all the difference in life, and fortunately there is always something to be grateful about. Perhaps the greatest gift, which can sometimes be overlooked, is the gift of life itself. The small things that sometimes get us down melt away when we remember the blessing of being alive to live another day in God’s Love.
Have you ever considered that God gives us the exact experiences we need in life to help us to know that His Divine hand is in everything? I have been blessed by a true spiritual teacher, Prophet Del Hall III, who has helped me to recognize that no experience in life is simply random or coincidental. It is all a part of God’s plan to help us to grow closer to Him and to recognize that His Love is all around. I was blessed years ago when Prophet helped me to recognize the Divine gift of working with a man who showed up at my job one day. His name was Juan, and he had recently arrived in Virginia from Honduras. He was an air-conditioning and refrigeration mechanic by trade, but due to economic problems in his home country he was now working on a landscaping crew with me and trying to save as much money as he could to send home to his family. My supervisor assigned him to work with me most days because I was the only one on the crew who could explain the details of the job to Juan in Spanish. As we worked together for long hours in the hot summer sun I began to see he had something precious, as precious as any American dollars, he had a grateful heart.
One hot humid afternoon as we pruned bushes next to a busy street, we began to talk about the spiritual side of life. Juan was a devout Christian who spoke about the Bible and God in a reverential tone. He at one point paused and said emphatically, “Every day is a gift from God.” His words went right into my heart. In that moment there was nothing to stress over. The hours of working in the summer heat, the traffic noise, feelings of loneliness since a relationship had recently come to an end, nothing that had been bothering me in days past, mattered at this point. It was a gift to simply to be alive for another day with God. While I felt Juan speaking from his heart in that moment, I know that it was also the spiritual presence of Prophet, the Voice of God, who was speaking words of Divine wisdom through him.
That conversation with my friend from Honduras helped me to look at life with a more grateful attitude. I went on to enjoy many more conversations with Juan as we became good friends. Many years have passed since I last saw Juan, but his words stay alive in my memory. Prophet, through his inner presence, has often taken me back to that moment when Juan expressed his gratitude for God and reminded me of what a precious gift of Divine love each day, and each moment, truly is.
Prophet Del Hall has also shown me that not only is each moment a precious gift from God, but that many of the people that we cross paths with in life may also be the carriers of profound gifts of love. One day when I was talking with Del about how I felt blessed to be able work with immigrants like Juan and to help them to feel more at ease in the United States, he raised the possibility that maybe Juan was a spiritual teacher who God had sent to me, because I was the one who needed some help. He certainly did teach me about gratitude and how to keep a positive attitude at a job that was not always pleasant or easy. He did this not just by things that he would say, but mostly through the example he set of often having a smile on his face and a sense of humor while he worked with enthusiasm, regardless of the weather or the task that we were assigned.
I have grown to appreciate that the Voice of God, the Holy Spirit, is always communicating to us. Sometimes the communication comes to us through the friends, co-workers, and seemingly random strangers, as well as from within ourselves. What a privilege it is to know that there is a Prophet of God upon this Earth who can help us to hear the Divine voice and to be alert to its presence in all areas of our lives.
Written by Roland Vonder Muhll