Having gratitude has many real blessings. According to Cerebral Cortex, gratitude can literally rewire the brain and increase happiness. Over the years, Apostles and prophets have also spoken about the value of having a positive attitude and being grateful. This Thanksgiving while reflecting on things you’re grateful for at the dinner table, here are five quotes from leaders of the Church to add to your discussion:
In his “Forget Me Not” talk shared with the Relief Society during October 2011 general conference, Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf talked about appreciating the small things in life.
“The happiest people I know are not those who find their golden ticket; they are those who, while in pursuit of worthy goals, discover and treasure the beauty and sweetness of the everyday moments. They are the ones who, thread by daily thread, weave a tapestry of gratitude and wonder throughout their lives. These are they who are truly happy.”
During April 2012 general conference, then-Elder Russell M. Nelson spoke about the difference between those who live “day to day without an awareness of God and His goodness unto them,” and those who express gratitude towards their Heavenly Father.
“How much better it would be if all could be more aware of God’s providence and love and express that gratitude to Him. Ammon taught, ‘Let us give thanks to (God), for he doth work righteousness forever.’ Our degree of gratitude is a measure of our love for Him."
President Gordon B. Hinckley also promised that gratitude can lift and bless an individual’s life.
"When you walk with gratitude, you do not walk with arrogance and conceit and egotism, you walk with a spirit of thanksgiving that is becoming to you and will bless your lives.”
In his address “The Divine Gift of Gratitude,” President Thomas S. Monson stated that gratitude is a “divine principle” and that it is the daily things which we often forget to be grateful for.
"Do material possessions make us happy and grateful? Perhaps momentarily. However, those things which provide deep and lasting happiness and gratitude are the things which money cannot buy: our families, the gospel, good friends, our health, our abilities, the love we receive from those around us. Unfortunately, these are some of the things we allow ourselves to take for granted."
Speaking on how to be grateful “regardless of the circumstances” which may surround us, Elder Uchtdorf gave this counsel during April 2014 general conference:
“We can be grateful!
“It might sound contrary to the wisdom of the world to suggest that one who is burdened with sorrow should give thanks to God. But those who set aside the bottle of bitterness and lift instead the goblet of gratitude can find a purifying drink of healing, peace and understanding.
"It is easy to be grateful for things when life seems to be going our way. But what then of those times when what we wish for seems to be far out of reach?
"Could I suggest that we see gratitude as a disposition, a way of life that stands independent of our current situation? In other words, I’m suggesting that instead of being thankful for things, we focus on being thankful in our circumstances —whatever they may be.”