The Curse Of Giving Thanks
Have you ever said something to someone and not gotten the response that you thought you would? Immediately after you said it, and didn't get the desired response, there was probably a sense of disappointment or frustration that you didn't intend to battle at the time as well. Maybe you told someone "thank you" for something and they didn't respond as enthusiastically as you hoped. The truth is, that's part of the curse of giving thanks, and because of that most people have a quick solution. That solution is simply to just stop giving thanks!
Disappointment is nothing more than unmet expectations. You have an expectation that is built up in your mind from every conversation, word, or transaction given, and when those expectations aren't met you are met with disappointment instead. And the disappointment you encounter typically drives how you communicate or relate next time, even though it may be to someone completely different. So, essentially you are forcing someone else to pay for the wrong doings of another.
How do we battle this? First off, understand that it's completely normal. It happens. Secondly, decide whether the expectation you had was clearly communicated to the person. You can't expect what you have never expressed, after all. It doesn't matter if it's just "common sense" - it has to be expressed! And thirdly, why do you have that expectation to begin with? If you're giving someone a meal for a "thanks," rather than to serve, then it's not the response that's wrong but the expectation. Here's the absolute best way to battle the curse of giving thanks though:
GIVE THANKS AT ALL TIMES... NO MATTER WHAT!
Just because you don't get what you want in the moment doesn't make giving thanks any less powerful. Give thanks to friends for their relationship in your life. Give thanks to your family for helping mold you into the person that you are becoming. Give thanks to the cashier for helping you, and the stranger ahead of you at Redbox for just being alive! Giving thanks is a curse, because you may not get the response you wanted... but we aren't giving thanks for that anyway. We are giving thanks because, well, we're thankful!
I'm thankful for YOU! Thank you for reading this blog, for being part of Radiate Church (physically or digitally), and for allowing me to have a small part in shaping habits in your life. This Thanksgiving - let's give thanks - with vigor, passion, and a thankful, unexacting heart!