Lead Us Not Into Temptation


Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others. – Cicero (106 BC – 43 BC)

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. That is how I feel as I read Sunday’s paper. On one hand, the dismal economic forecasts for 2009; on the other hand, the glossy slick ‘door buster’ circulars encouraging us to get up at 4am the day after Thanksgiving.

Our children are watching. We have an opportunity to fight the marketers back. A young mom putting her child into his Spiderman® pajamas said, “I have fought as much as I could, but he lit up when he saw them in the store. I loved watching the joy on his face and I had to get them.”

The desire to elicit joy comes from love. But as we approach the most difficult financial conditions any of us have ever experienced, we cannot do things the same way we have in the past. The need is pajamas; the want is Spiderman® pajamas. The instant gratification of that purchase is momentary and fleeting, for both the parent and child.

As we approach the Thanksgiving holiday, be grateful for what you have. Are any of the items on the circulars glossy pages are among them? Sitting together at the table this Thursday, ask everyone to write down what they are thankful for.

Gratitude is a emotion that can get us through the most difficult times and put in perspective what really matters. Don’t respond to the ups and downs of a turbulent economy; instead be grateful for the people that matter in your life.



  1. anne said

    I’m scared on a daily basis and then I pray and I remember…I have so many blessings. My seventeen year old daughter being number one. We have our health and each other. The future is uncertain but we have one. Gratitude is endless, hard times do end. Thanks for the reminder.

  2. Sandra McCarthy said

    At this moment in time I am grateful to be in the center of the generations of my family tree… In front my mother… still showing me how to adapt, and
    grow and love in the face of adversity or challenge at 80 she truly has lived
    through good times and bad…
    than my hubby and I arm in arm ,hanging on… holding each other up, on
    many levels…
    and watching and listening to the young, joyful, spirits of my children, as
    a tween and a teen curious, and concerned about the times, yet still a
    constant reminder about what really counts, feeling safe, loved, and in
    good health are priceless…
    Blessings to you and yours!
    Enjoy each other, live every day like it’s your last…

  3. Luisa said

    Here, here! You said it beautifully…

    And once you start living in gratitude, it comes easier and easier to count your blessings instead of your troubles!

  4. Phyllis Piccirillo said

    My life is my Thanksgiving..While dealing with my own personal issue with a malignancy I will certainly be giving thanks to my life this Thursday with the hope that I can say Thank You for giving me a second chance to be able to share the love of family by my side. One more biopsy which by the way I haven’t been able to find that in those glossy sale circulars you mention. So I guess some of us really know what is important and meaningful in our lives. One more to go and god willing I will tell you everyday will be Thanksgiving Day for me….To all a wonderful Holiday!

    PS: Don’t they make Wonder Woman PJ’s any more?

  5. Carolyn Vasquez said

    What am I grateful for?

    The look on my son’s sleepy face when he toddles out of our room in the morning looking for a snuggle to start the day… and I am grateful to fall asleep with his scent in my nose. I am grateful for meaningful work, and for childcare at my office. I am grateful to steal away from my desk at naptime and whisper in his ear, “Mommy loves you, Liam Vincent.” I am grateful to have a wonderful husband who is an amazing father and a circle of family and friends to love and be loved by.

  6. Kathy Hlavaty said

    Bravo! Thank you for writing such a beautiful article on gratitude.

    I’m grateful for many, many things – first and foremost, for my good health and that of my family and friends. When I sit back and really think about what has shaped my life and given me the most confidence and strength though I realize I’m most grateful for the challenges I’ve had to overcome because I’ve learned mostly from my failures than my successes….”

    Happy Thanksgiving to all…

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