One of the noblest words in our language is “grace,” defined as “unearned blessing.” We live by grace far more than by anything else. Accordingly, I find that the one thing which I want to put into practice in my own life is the conscious and deliberate habit of finding someone to thank.
~ Elton Trueblood
I love the word “grace.” It’s always been on my list of favorite words. Grace is my youngest granddaughter’s middle name. Picking Grace as a middle name was serendipitous, in a way, since neither my son nor my daughter-in-law know that grace is a word I adore.
According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, “grace” has at least eight definitions ranging from “unmerited divine assistance given humans for their regeneration or sanctification” to “a musical trill, turn, or appoggiatura.” Grace can be a prayer said before a meal, an ease of movement, or an act of kindness.
Grace is the way an oak leaf lets go of the tree and floats to the ground. Grace is the honeybee gathering pollen from the goldenrod and morning glories. Grace is a rabbit bounding into the meadow to hide. I am not the epitome of grace (in fact, I am well known for my klutziness and ability to trip over my own feet), but I do find grace in my daily walks and the movement of this wonderful body that allows me to experience life through the senses I have been given. Grace is the strength and health I should never take for granted.
The Three Graces (also called The Charities) of Greek mythology, daughters of Zeus and Eurynome, are Aglaia (Splendor), Euphrosyne (Mirth), and Thalia (Good Cheer). According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, the name Charis (Greek) or Gratia (Latin) refers to the “pleasing” or “charming” appearance of a fertile field or garden, and they were considered goddesses of fertility.
Ted Andrews, in his book “Animal Speak,” describes meadows as “places of soft and silent growth,” that can teach how to “add fertility and nourishment to your own life.” Perhaps The Graces are residing in the meadows at this time of year when the flowers of autumn bloom and the flowers of summer have transformed themselves into seeds and berries, broadcasting their life and wisdom to future generations.
Today, on this second day of the 100 Days of Gratitude Challenge, I am grateful for the grace of autumn, for the gifts of bounty and nourishment brought to us through fall’s harvest, for the blessing of cooler temperatures after the harsh heat and humidity of summer, and for the way this season teaches me how to age gracefully and with a blaze of light and color.
I am grateful for walks in the meadows where I can watch the butterflies, listen to the rustle of the grasses and the buzzing of the bees, and take in the dry scents of leaves and earth. (I am not so grateful for the sudden swarm of mosquitoes that have appeared over the past week or two, but I suppose they have their place in life and will try to be grateful for that.)
And I am grateful for you. Thank you for visiting today, and walking through the meadows and around the pond with me. The rains will be here soon, and even though it will mean more mowing and a lot of sogginess, I’m thankful for it. It’s been dry, as usual for this time of year, and every bit of rain is appreciated.
Be good, be kind, be loving. Just Be. 🙂