Thankful for what we have

Published 12:00 am Friday, November 28, 2003

This is the day we give thanks.

In times of trial, this is difficult, since it is easier to see the shadows of our lives instead of the light; it seems to be, perversely, more satisfying to complain of the failures around us than to recognize the successes.

But they are out there, those successes, and for those we give thanks. The triumphs come in varying sizes, from the trivial to the weighty, from global to the local. We give thanks for the men and women fighting to gain and preserve peace around the world. We give thanks to the area football teams for providing wholesome entertainment and community pride. We give thanks for the recovery of our economy in our nation and we give thanks for the jobs that didn't end this year in our county.

We give thanks to the volunteers, who give so much in so many areas. We give thanks for the educators, the clergy, the professionals, all working to make our home better and safer and our world more humane.

Keeping in mind those shadows of the past year, when things have not gone right, there is one more group of people to be thanked - or type of people - we should say.

We give thanks for those who recognize the shadows and succeed in spite of them, perhaps even because of them. Rather than wring their hands and moan about the woes of the world, they roll up their shirt sleeves and set about to change them.

We give thanks to those who remember to say "Thank you," who recognize jobs well done and say so, instead of remaining silent until something goes wrong. We give thanks to those who recognize their place - and their responsibility - to their community and act upon it by supporting their volunteer fire departments, giving to local charities, and making the world a better place.

Above all, we gave thanks that, despite headlines and gloom and doom observations, there are many, many good and positive people in our lives.