There are many ways that we can make a positive difference in the lives of other people. One of these ways is very easy to do and doesn’t have to cost much time or any money. Are you interested in knowing more about it? It is the simple action of saying “thank you”.

How much power does saying “thank you” really have? You can help me to answer this question from your own life. Does it matter to have people notice, and appreciate, our efforts? It is extremely easy to feel under-appreciated, and to get discouraged. Even a little “thank you” can have the strength of lifting someone’s spirits!

How often do we say “thank you”? Do we have room in our lives to share a few more? My thought is that as long as we are sincere, we should find as many opportunities as possible to say “thank you”. Sometimes we make the mistake of assuming others know that we appreciate them, so we don’t bother telling them. Let’s not risk them not knowing!

This upcoming Sunday is a good opportunity to use our “thank you” skills. Did you know that Sunday, October 14, is Pastor Appreciation Day? Or that all of October is considered Pastor Appreciation Month? Do you have a pastor in your life that you appreciate? This is a good time to make sure that they know!

I want to take a moment of personal privilege to thank all the pastors in our Conference for the hard work that you do. I especially want to thank all of the pastors in the South District. Every week I get to watch you in action. It is amazing! Thank you!

Using special days, months, and holidays is one way to remind ourselves to say “thank you”. What would happen if we used birthdays and anniversaries as extra occasions to say “thank you”? My preference, though, is to make thankfulness part of every day. If we look, can we find someone to sincerely thank each day?

The easiest place for me to be thankful is with God. Most days things happen that can’t easily be explained, or things come together better than I could have planned. Today has been no exception for me. It started with an early morning trip to the bathroom. I was surprised to find that my body eliminated over a hundred pieces of my kidney stone. This was expected after my last procedure (ultra- sonic vibrations), but I hadn’t seen any pieces of the stone for a week. As the morning went on, more pieces came out. I’m especially thankful now for my kidney stent! I’m wondering if God helped me out this morning with crushing more of the stone? It might be good that I haven’t had my CT Scan yet.

The CT Scan, though, has been a source of irritation for the last two weeks. I just couldn’t get the doctor’s office to place the order. I called the doctor’s office three work-days in a row, with the last one being today. No one seemed to be able to help me. When I prayed about it, it came to me that I should write a note and drop it off at the office where I know that the doctor sees patients on Mondays. Before the afternoon was over, I had both an order for the CT Scan, and a Friday appointment.

I know that the doctor sees patients at that office on Mondays, because that is where I see the doctor. My next appointment is this Monday, which is why I have been pushing hard for the CT Scan. I was disappointed to find out that they need twenty-four to seventy-two business hours to get the results to the doctor. Through a chain of events today, though, I now have the doctor’s cell phone number. In a text he told me that he will be able to access the CT Scan on Monday. I am thankful that God got everything arranged just in time!

On top of all of this, tonight I avoided a car accident on my way to a Charge Conference that would have been my fault. I just didn’t see the other car when I made a lane-change. There is no way that we could avoid colliding, yet we missed each other. It’s hard not to feel thankful to God about this!

When we focus on being thankful, it impacts the way that we think and how we approach life. Our society has gotten so negative that I’m thinking we should start a “thankful revolution”. Will you join me? Today is a good day to start, though tomorrow is OK, too. I want to thank you in advance for considering being a part of this revolution!

Your brother on the journey, Mark

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