Gratitude and Good News

I was taught by my mom to choose gratitude.  Each day we get to choose how we are going to respond to the world around us, as most of it is out of our control. My mom sums up gratitude for me.

My Grandma Grace Johnson taught me about good news.

The single most thing I remember her saying to me all the time was, “Do you wanna hear the good news?”.

Yes! I responded, every time. 
And she would say, “Jesus loves you and so do I!”.

Like anything, it can be an effort to act in gratitude.  It is an action, like exercising, eating healthy, or just trying to do a little better than yesterday. 

The good news is that Jesus loves us and that is eternal.  That is a gift given to us freely, without any strings attached.  We do not have to do anything to receive that unconditional love.

Gratitude is the effort we choose each day to either be the light or not.  People can do nothing and receive God’s Grace. 

Unless by doing nothing, you inadvertently are in agreement with the wrongdoing going on around you.

Because, silence can become consent.

Others, however create an environment where they prop themselves up as a self-proclaimed idol and demand that we must go through them to receive their grace. 

That is where sayings like, “trust, but verify” become useful.

That is where paying attention to what people say and compare it to what their actions actually are.

Do the words and actions reconcile?

I believe this is what we were warned about when being taught to watch out for false gods, false idols, and false prophets. 

Those falsehoods are not in statues, places, or venues. Although there are reminders of falsehoods that are remembered through inanimate objects – it is not the object that was false, but the action.

This is where communication – as time immemorial is important – we do not want to deconstruct history so it can be forgotten and then more easily repeated.

So be weary of false idols, false gods, and false prophets that manipulate the emotions of the very people that were impacted the most in their ancestry.

We know that our grandma’s and grandpa’s died so we can be at this exact time in our history.

We know that the false gods, false idols, and false prophets prey on our own to create “token natives”.

We are witnessing the storm right now. I do not have words of wisdom for weathering this storm.

But I do know someone who does.

And He says, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

Published by Trudy Sobocienski

My blog, "Beyond Leadership" is a creative place to share my personal feelings and thoughts while working in leadership roles for a variety of Alaska Native organizations, both for and not-for profit entities. An incredible leader and mentor of mine once asked while we were in Washington, DC, "What happened to you between the ages of 7-10 that motivated you to serve in a native leadership capacity". I was struck by that poignant thought and as such, include actual entries from my mother and my diaries beginning in the early 1970's. I enjoy sharing these excerpts because it captures the parallels she and I were experiencing throughout life, from two separate worldviews. Hers as a young mother of four and mine as her eldest child. I have never came across a book on leadership that lays bare a leaders personal feelings, thoughts, hopes, fears and dreams they were experiencing. So for me, my goal is two-fold: 1. Share the incredible life my parents created for my siblings and I growing up in remote Alaska; and, 2) Sharing my humanity, through my personal diaries and journals, while serving as the youngest-ever President/CEO for the Alaska Native Health Board. There are passages that will include significant policy issues I was working on throughout my career and travels. There are many more passages that do not. I cannot speak for my mom's passages, because I am reading them as I share them here, with you; with her permission of course.

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