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Grace - Gratitude - Love - Forgiveness

It is said that grace is undeserved favor. It means you’re loved and accepted, even if you’re an asshole. Grace cannot be purchased; it is something that is freely given. Grace is the foundation of faith. Without grace, faith doesn’t matter. We are saved by faith through grace. There is nothing more valuable and nothing to be more grateful for. “You must pay for everything in this world. There is nothing free except the grace of God. You cannot earn that or deserve it.” – Charles Portis.


The word gratitude comes from the Latin word gratus, which means thankful, or pleasing. Gratitude is when you feel thankful for the good things in your life. These good things are often the things we take for granted – a roof over our head, food, clean water, friends, and family. Throughout history and around the world, religious leaders and philosophers have extolled the virtue of gratitude. Some have even described gratitude as the social glue that fortifies relationships between friends, family, and romantic partners. It is the backbone of human society. “Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all others” – Cicero.


Love can be both positive and negative. It can lift your heart or sink it. It can make you happy or make you sad. The love of a mother differs from the love of a spouse, which differs from the love for food. To me, love is about growth, support, respect, and understanding. Sometimes, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of love in the world, but there is. It’s all around us. But, of course, there can be no love without forgiveness just as there can be no forgiveness without love. “All you need is love.” – The Beatles.


Forgiveness is the practice of a higher form of love – love for others, but more importantly, love for oneself. Forgiveness stands at the center of God’s love for us, and at the center of our love for each other. It can be very hard to forgive sometimes, but it becomes a little easier when you realize what forgiveness does for you personally. “Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it.” – Mark Twain.


Merry Christmas from everyone at Paddy’s, and as 2023 becomes 2024, we wish you abundant grace, gratitude, love, and forgiveness.

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