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Crump's Concern

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Teach me to pray? Anyone can recite or memorize a prayer, but teaching gratitude is something different. The attitude of gratitude is very different from the attitude of entitlement. Life, you owe me. You owe me happiness. You owe me justice. You owe me attention and vindication. You owe me an audience and a lifetime guarantee of fulfillment. I'm somebody special and you owe me. I pray in the name of You Owe Me, Amen. The attitude of gratitude is of a different order. Author M. J. Ryan lists several gifts of gratitude: "gratitude is the mother of joy, gratitude makes us young, gratitude makes us feel good, gratitude promotes health, gratitude eradicates worry, gratitude draws people to us, gratitude is the antidote to bitterness and resentment, gratitude cures perfectionism, gratitude releases us from the gimmes, gratitude keeps us current, gratitude opens our hearts, gratitude spawns kindness and generosity, gratitude joins us to all life, gratitude connects us to spirit. Gratitude opens us to moments of grace." (M. J. Ryan, Attitudes of Gratitude: How to Give and Receive Joy Every Day of Your Life.) Table grace: "We give thanks for Being. We give thanks for being here. We give thanks for being here together. We give thanks for being here together sharing the bounty of the earth." (John Buehrens) Table grace: "Spirit of Life, for all the gifts we have received, for birthdays and whales and chicken soup and chocolate, and furry pets and water slides and computer games and slumber and parties and hugs and scary stories and fractions and warm blankets and smiles and caring, we are thankful." (s. j. c.)