How Can You Be Thankful?

How Can You Be Thankful?

"Always be thankful for what you have, you never know what could happen next."

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How can you be thankful when mass shootings have become a normality? Have we reached a point in society where we're desensitized to individuals being sensibly murdered by gun violence? What seems like a shooting every other week, no place seems safe.

You're not safe attending religious events. You're not safe attending a hot yoga class. You're not safe going to a bar during college night. Are we really safe anywhere? How many more countless lives do we have to lose to gun violence? Sandy Hook, where elementary school students were killed, happened six years ago, and yet we still haven't issued stricter gun laws? C'mon. This is something that could be easily prevented through gun reform and yet, we're losing more and more lives and for what, your precious guns?

Gun reform never meant stripping people of their guns nor did it ever mean abandoning the second amendment as a whole; it meant providing better guidelines and regulations, seeking extra security checks such as a mental evaluation, and making sure a weapon powerful enough to end someone's life never gets into the wrong hands. Repeat after me: "gun reform isn't meant to personally hurt me, it's meant to prevent others from being hurt."

I am 22 years old and I have lived through more mass shootings than I can count on my two hands. I remember clearly the exact place and time I was each time I learned a mass shooting had taken place in Florida, my home state. It may have been different places but the same feelings of heartache and frustration were present. Exhaustion is an understatement at this point. How can I be thankful during this Thanksgiving season when countless families are going to have an empty chair, only to be reminded of the loss they've suffered. The definition of what holidays are to these families are never going to be the same again. As much as I hope for the strength and love for these families to stay strong––Thanksgiving will never be the same again. We get the privilege of having dinner with our families, enjoying the little moments, and taking for granted what we have at times. They don't get the privilege of Thanksgiving dinners or any other days.

309 mass shootings out of 316 days, so far. That's essentially a mass shooting almost every week. I can't fathom the thought of a new year approaching as these numbers increase. According to CNN, the U.S. makes up less than 5% of the world's population, but holds 31% of global mass shooters. How can I be thankful this Thanksgiving when a part of me feels hopeless; I want this to be the end but I don't know if it will and that thought terrifies me every day.

I don't want to become a statistic. I don't want to be afraid of going to school or my job. I don't want to wake up another day where this could've been prevented and wasn't. I don't want this kind of atrocity to happen to anyone else. And don't you dare tell me I need to carry a gun because that is not the solution. Are we just going to continue sending thoughts and prayers or are we going to make a difference this time? What's it going to take, America? How can I be thankful this Thanksgiving? I'm not.


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10 Bible Verses For Thanksgiving

Psalm 34:1
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The Thanksgiving season is a time we spend with our loved ones giving thanks for the blessings we are given. Here are 20 Bible verses that remind us of what Thanksgiving is all about:

1) 1 Chronicles 16:34

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.

2) Colossians 3:15-17

And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

3) Philippians 4:6

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

4) Psalm 30:12

That my glory may sing your praise and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give thanks to you forever!

5) Isaiah 12:4-5

And you will say in that day: “Give thanks to the Lord, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the peoples, proclaim that his name is exalted. “Sing praises to the Lord, for he has done gloriously; let this be made known in all the earth.

6) Hebrews 12:28-29

Therefore, since we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us show gratitude, by which we may offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and awe; for our God is a consuming fire.

7) Jonah 2:9

But I will sacrifice to You With the voice of thanksgiving. That which I have vowed I will pay Salvation is from the Lord."

8) 1 Timothy 4:4-5

For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected, if it is received with gratitude; for it is sanctified by means of the word of God and prayer.

9) Psalm 28:7

The Lord is my strength and my shield; My heart trusts in Him, and I am helped; Therefore my heart exults, And with my song I shall thank Him.

10) Psalm 100:4

Enter His gates with thanksgiving, And His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him; bless His name.

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Do Not Be Ungrateful This Thanksgiving, Here Are 33 Reasons Why You Should Be Thankful

We do not spend enough time being thankful, and that is unfair

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Thanksgiving is a beautiful, unique and American holiday. Thanksgiving is about food, about family, but especially is about being thankful. I know, we spend a lot of our time complaining about several things, our job, our professor, our boss, our partner, our family, ourselves, our politicians, our favorite artist, our car and much more.

We do not spend enough time being thankful, and that is unfair. We have many reasons to say thanks; I give you thirty-three. Here are my reasons to be thankful (and I think they are yours too):

1. Our family. Even if you don’t like them, they made you like you are.

2. To be alive. You may not like your life, but it is an opportunity.

3. To live in the US. Have you seen all the people in the world who want to live here? The US is a country full of opportunities.

4. Our jobs. I don’t like mine either, but it pays my bill, and it reminds me I can do something better.

5. Our schools/colleges/universities. We are so lucky because we have the chance to study.

6. To vote. It took thousands of years to get the right to vote and chose our representatives, governors, presidents, senator and others (if you’re a woman or part of a minority you must be more thankful).

7. For Facebook. The best way to know our friends and relatives’ lives

8. For our favorite TV shows. We are living in the golden age of TV; we are so lucky (and we have TV Reboots & Revivals).

9. We can dream. We can change our lives; we can choose our destiny. Half of the people in the world do not have that chance.

10. For love. It does not matter if you have a partner or you don’t; enjoy the fact you have your stories and you will have more.

11. For babies, puppies, cats and dogs. What would we do with all those hours watching their videos on Youtube?

12. Free sexuality. We are living in the time where you can be anything you want, and you can love anybody you want. Just think, fifty years ago, we were prisoners of society.

13. “Game of Thrones” is back in April 2019. We have been waiting too long.

14. For books. Reading makes us better people.

15. For Instagram. Food never was more important than now. IG is the best way to know how our celebrities’ lives are.

16. For our friends. I cannot imagine my life without my friends; they are my rock and the best support in the worse moments.

17. For Netflix. How did we spend our Sundays before?

18. We are the last generation who can handle climate change and save the world.

19. For Christmas. 

20. For your kids. I am talking about your own, your nephews, nieces, siblings, godchildren, step kids, even your neighbors.

21. For alcohol and all the good memories (and really bad decisions), it made us have.

22. Freedom of the press. Today more than any other time we must be thankful about freedom of the press (and we must protect it).

23. For our health. Even if you are not completely healthy, you are in the era where medicine is available and improving every second.

24. For #Metoo movement. Finally, we can share our experiences and stop them for the next generations.

25. For traveling. You can go to Australia, Madagascar, France or Chile if you want. There are no limits.

26. For freedom.

27. For second chances. We all need them in all the moments of our lives.

28. For food. Because it makes our lives better and delicious.

29. For memes. Now each picture has a huge potential to be famous.

30. For God or the Gods. Be thankful because you have somebody who listens to your prays.

31. For the Future. Because we can make it.

32. For the past. Because it is our history.

33. For the present. We are living the best of all the times. Today, most of the social movements have had important advances. It is easier to be a woman, a minority, a refugee, an immigrant or have a disability. 

Yes, probably I am missing some important motives to be thankful which means there are dozens of more reasons. By the way, Happy Thanksgiving!

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