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The Beauty Of Gratitude by ajuksobi: 6:29pm On Nov 13, 2023

Ajukura, Fidelis O.
13th November, 2023.

Gratitude is a good and commendable trait, not many people have the quality or tendency to express it. Before we proceed, what exactly is gratitude? "Gratitude", according to the Thesaurus Dictionary is "the feeling of thankfulness or appreciation (or similar positive response) by a recipient of another's kindness". This kindness can be gifts, help, favors, or another form of generosity to another person.

Gratitude is a feeling or response that is borne out of one's personal conviction. Gratitude is never compelled or imposed on anyone. When somebody receives a favour from another, it is expected that the recipient of such favour express unreserved gratitude to the one who has offered him the favour. Failure to do this, obviously will be adjudged as "ingratitude". One of the major reasons why many people are reluctant to offer help or assistance to others is ingratitude. It is an incontrovertible fact that a lot of people have become victims of their generosity or kind deeds. The stench of ingratitude is very strong in our society. A lot of people have not only failed to show appreciation for the kind deed extended to them but have acted in a way that discomfits the one who offered the assistance. Over two years ago, a young man in my office approached a senior colleague of his and complained about the challenges he was going through in his family. At the end, he begged the senior colleague to borrow him the sum of #50,000 and pledged to returned the money within 3 months. The senior colleague displayed a noble generosity by giving him the money without any interest. Today, it is exactly 2 years and 3 months; no dime has been given to the senior colleague despite the fact that the young man has been collecting his salary regularly. Even as some incentives and bonuses hit his account, he has refused to return the money as he had earlier promised. Every entreaty to get the young man return the money has fallen on deaf ears such that, few days ago, the senior colleague declared that she was leaving the matter in the hands of God. This is the height of ingratitude and wickedness. The implication of this action is that it is going to serve as a stumbling block to others.

Gratitude unlike ingratitude is permissive; it allows people the freedom to relate freely with one another without entertaining fear of any kind. Gratitude enlivens the society such that there is unrestrained growth and development.

Humility and gratitude are Siamese twins: one can hardly exist without the other. Proud and arrogant people seldom express gratitude; in their mind, it's as if they're poor, hungry or suffering.

Ingratitude cuts across the various strata of society. In order words, ingratitude is not limited to any group or class of people. For instance, the rich, poor, strong, weak, young, old etc can manifest un-thankfulness or ingratitude.

Yesterday, I was enthralled by the level of gratitude displayed by an elderly woman (an Octogenarian) popularly known as "Mama" in my Church. Mama is such a thankful and appreciative woman. Whatever good that is done to her, she never fails to tell anybody close to her about it. Moreover, she will also insist that you thank the person for her. Yesterday, during Church service when I gave her a token for offering, she told everyone who cared to listen and asked them to, on her behalf thank me. At a point, it was becoming embarrassing as many people started coming to me to say "thank you". What startled me was when our Pastor came quietly to me to say "thank you". "Mama told me that you gave her something" he said.

I decided to talk about Mama because she has a grateful heart. Not many people are like Mama: she is a happy and convivial person. I'm sure that her age and strength is drawn from the beauty of gratitude.

Gratitude is such a beautiful thing; despite the fact that it depicts good manner, it opens door to many relationships and opportunities. According to a study published in 2012, grateful people enjoy better health than others. Gratitude reduces a multitude of toxic emotions such as; envy, regret, hatred and frustration. Grateful people are prone to conforming to laws or standards. They also sleep very well. Above all, gratitude increases mental strength.

Gratitude energizes or invigorates the spirit when you recognize all you have to be thankful for. For the fact that you're alive and moving about freely is more than enough to thank God and be happy.

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