Risk Rap

Rapping About a World at Risk

Sense of Gratitude

For this years Thanksgiving, I have decided to focus on developing a sense of gratitude. The world is full of real bad stuff happening to too many people and its easy to let the darkness of our times cast long shadows of resentment, anger and ill will over our outlook on life. So today as I travel to a relatives home to gather for our national day of thankfulness I choose to leave resentments at home and cultivate a sense of gratitude.

I’m grateful for my eyes. My sight allows me to perceive the million graces The Almighty abundantly confers upon the inhabitants of the good earth each and every day. My eyes help me to discover the pressing needs of others and respond to it. My eyes help me to discern light from darkness, distinguish the forest from the trees and eschew pedestrian views to behold a beautiful vista. My eyes are a pathway to my soul moving me to contemplate the good, forsake the bad and move against evil in service to truth.

I’m grateful for my ears. The grace of hearing permits me to listen. My ears alert me to the cries of my brothers and sisters and enables me to understand our shared human condition. My ears tune my spirit to the chords of exquisite music and the natural symphonies of Mother Earth’s angelic chorus of singing birds, heaving oceans, the majestic pause of silent mountains and the fleeting rush of the swelling wind are all divine voices singing the joyful hymns of life.

I’m thankful for my sense of smell. Graciously my nose breathes in the inviting aroma of a lovingly prepared home cooked meal, the wholesome scent of baking bread wafting from the door of the corner bakery, a briny snort from the boundless sea, the rich compost of the deep woods after a soft summer rain, the bouquet of an infants hair and the perfume of a lovers embrace.

I give thanks for my ability to touch. Hands engaged in productive work and gainful employment is a blessing absent from too many Thanksgiving Day tables this year. We yearn to connect and the sense of touch invites our ability to feel. Feeling is the father of empathy and the mother of compassion. Caring for our animal friends we live in communion with all sentient beings.  As we touch one another and allow others to touch us; the hardest of hearts is softened, the most grievous wounds are healed to liberate the sensual yearnings dwelling in the deepest recesses of ourselves. Feeling allows us to become fully present, fully aware and fully alive in the celebration of what it means to be fully human.

I’m thankful for my sense of taste. As Sinatra croons “from the brim to the dregs” the wine of our lives may not all taste good but it all flows clear and true. Sample, savor and learn. Taste and see the glories of the Lord’s banquet so abundantly placed before us. The bitter herbs, the sweet cakes, the leisure repast, the fortifying meal and unrequited hunger is the daily bread of being human.  Pause to consider those that are lining up for the tenth Thanksgiving Day meal in Afghanistan and Iraq and pray that the awful rations of war fed to our young soldiers be supplanted with the good manna of peace.

Perhaps we loose our sense of gratitude because expectations of ourselves and others always seems to come up short of the mark. Imperfection is our most endearing quality. It informs our ability to forgive transgressions, form bonds of friendship and unconditionally love each other. I remain grateful for the sense of my imperfection as I overlook your imperfections and remain ever hopeful that you  will extend your hand to help me over come mine.

Happy Thanksgiving.

You Tube Video: Jean Ritchie, Shady Grove

risk: resentment, gratitude, peace, metal health,

November 25, 2010 Posted by | armed services, community, culture, faith, family, life, psychology, recession, seasons, Spirituality, war | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Giving Thanks

We give thanks for all who have enriched our lives with their presence;

may we honor them by always being present for others.


We give thanks for those who selflessly serve in our armed forces,

for the quiet sacrifices of their family and friends

and for those who witness for peace and work to end the conflicts of war.


We are thankful for the tears of the poor

and their example of fortitude in the daily struggle to live

and for those that extend a handkerchief

and offer a vision of hope and a pathway to advancement.


We are thankful for our rich abundance

and the blessed spirit that leads us to generously share it with others.


We are thankful for wise thoughtful teachers

and students that are eager to use that wisdom to better the world.


We are thankful for courageous truth tellers

and the hard truths they speak

and to people of good will that are open

and willing to listen and act on those truths.


We are thankful for the care givers

and their veneration of  life

and to those who receive care

and fill the heart of the giver with fathomless gratitude.


We are thankful for people of humility and good will

and their blessed example of quiet service and grace.


We are thankful for children as an embodiment of our hopes

and the future flowering of our greatest aspirations.


We are thankful for our animal friends

and their example of trusted companionship

and unconditional love.


We are thankful for sobriety

and our ability to discern, see, discover

and experience the daily graces life confers upon us.


We are thankful for those who are no longer with us,

may our time on earth be a blessing to others as they were to us.


We are thankful to a higher power that keeps us right sized,

humble and grateful for one more day on life’s path.


Wishing All the Beloved a Grace Filled Happy Thanksgiving

Peace and Prayers


You Tube Music Video:

Shirley Horn, Here’s To Life

November 25, 2009 Posted by | holiday, love, seasons | , , | 1 Comment