Let us develop an attitude of gratitude; value what we have and give thanks for everything that happens to us, knowing that every step forward is a step toward achieving something bigger and better than our current situation. On this day, God wants us to know that today we have a cause for celebration.

Today, we should celebrate what an unbelievable life we have had so far: the accomplishments, the many blessings, and, yes, even the hardships because they have served to make us stronger. Just as a gem cannot be polished without friction, nor can a life be perfected without trials. Let us take some time to acknowledge our life, count our blessings and praise ourselves. Here's an inspiring narrative that could be an eye-opener to many of us.

As the story goes, the owner of a small business, a friend of the poet Olavo Bilac, met him on the street and asked him. “Mr. Bilac, I need to sell my small farm. The one you know so well, could you please write an announcement for me for the paper?

Bilac wrote: “For sale: A beautiful property, where birds sing at dawn in extensive woodland, bisected by the brilliant and sparkling waters of a large stream. The house is bathed by the rising sun. It offers tranquil shade in the evenings on the veranda.

Some time later, the poet met his friend and asked whether he had sold the property. To which he replied: “I’ve changed my mind when I read what you had written, I realized the treasure that was mine.”

Sometimes we underestimate the good things we have, chasing after the mirages of false treasures. We often see people letting go of their children, their families, their spouse, their friends, their profession, their knowledge accumulated over many years, their good health, the good things in life. They throw out what God has given them so freely. Things which were nourished with so much care and effort.

Look around and appreciate what you have: Your home, your loved ones, friends on whom you can really count, the knowledge you have gained, your good health, and all the beautiful things of life, that are truly your most precious treasures.

We can no longer shower kindness on those we love, after they have died. It is useless to want to re-do the work that we may have done negligently. It’s best to appreciate and do things well now.

Ask God at every moment that our problems and concerns never degenerate into feelings of sadness and anxiety. Be in union with God, who will provide the courage needed for victory in the struggle; because God gives with abundance what we need.

We are all imperfect. Always praise and value your family. Do all you can to make it even better. Always praise and value your work-companions. See what you can do to improve your environment, instead of isolating yourself because of weakness or failure, seek to invest in true and constructive friendships in your life.

Faith in God is necessary to strengthen self-esteem in dealing with daily problems. My wish for you is be wish God, and may God be with you.

By Tim Pedrosa

Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every man has many, not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.-–Charles Dickens It is always possible to be thankful for what is given rather than to complain about what is not given. One or the other becomes a habit of life.--Elisabeth Elliot