POETRY: A Good Day by Brother David Steindl-Rast

A Good Day by Brother David Steindl-Rast

A Gift Of Gratitude

You think this is just
another day in your life? 

It’s not just another day;
it’s the one day that
is given to you…

today

It’s given to you. It’s a gift.

It’s the only gift that you
have right now, and the
one appropriate response
is gratefulness.

If you do nothing else but to
cultivate that response to the great
gift that this unique day is,

if you learn to respond
as if it were the first day
of your life,

and the very last day,

then you will have spent
this day very well.

Begin by opening your
eyes and be surprised that you
have eyes you can open,

that incredible array of colors

that is constantly offered to
us for pure enjoyment.

Look at the sky.

We so rarely look at the sky.
We so rarely note how different
it is from moment to
moment
with clouds coming
and going.

We just think of the weather, and
even of the weather we don’t think
of all the many nuances of weather.

We just think of good weather
and bad weather.

This day right now has
unique weather, maybe a
kind that will never exactly
in that form come again.

That formation of clouds in the sky will
never be the same that it is right now.

Open your eyes. Look at that.

Look at the faces 
of people whom you meet.

Each one has an incredible
story 
behind their face, a story
that you could never fully fathom,
not only their own story,
but the story of their ancestors.

We all go back so far.

And in this present
moment 
on this day, all the
people you meet, all that life
from generations and from so
many places all over the world,
flows together and meets you
here like a life-giving
water, if you only open your
heart and drink.

Open your heart
to the incredible gifts that
civilization gives to us.

You flip a switch
and there is
electric light.

You turn a faucet and
there is warm water and cold water—
and drinkable water.

It’s a gift that millions and millions
in the world will never experience.

So these are just a few of
an enormous number
of gifts to which you can
open your heart.

And so I wish for you that
you would open your heart
to all these blessings and let
them flow through you,
that everyone whom you will meet
on this day will be blessed by you;
just by your eyes,
by your smile, by your touch—
just by your presence.

Let the gratefulness overflow
into blessing all around you,

and then it will really be
a good day.

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