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Count Your Blessings

Table of Contents

Count Your Blessings

  1. How to Observe Thanksgiving by Anonymous
  2. Count Your Blessings by William Henry Dawson
  3. Thanksgiving by William Stanley Braithwaite
  4. I thank thee God, that I have lived by Elizabeth Craven
  5. The Things Divine by Jean Brooks Burt
  6. A Thankful Heart by Robert Herrick
  7. Nike by Bliss Carman
  8. Common Things by Paul Laurence Dunbar
  9. Freely Receive, Freely Give by Peter Burn

Recognizing Life's Blessings

  1. Thanksgiving by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  2. The Ground Laurel by Hannah Flagg Gould
  3. Lost Joy by Emily Dickinson
  4. Life by Richard Lynott O'Malley
  5. Living by Edgar A. Guest
  6. As by the dead we love to sit by Emily Dickinson
  7. Satisfied by Emily Dickinson
  8. The Value of Little Things by William Cutter
  9. Our Blessings by Ella Wheeler Wilcox
  10. Recompense by Grace Noll Crowell
  11. The Gift of Time by Amos Russel Wells
  12. Morning by Annette Wynne

Count Your Blessings

  1. How to Observe Thanksgiving

    Count your blessings instead of your crosses;
    Count your gains instead of your losses.

    - Anonymous
    How to Observe Thanksgiving
    by Anonymous

    Count your blessings instead of your crosses;
    Count your gains instead of your losses.
    Count your joys instead of your woes;
    Count your friends instead of your foes.
    Count your smiles instead of your tears;
    Count your courage instead of your fears.
    Count your full years instead of your lean;
    Count your kind deeds instead of your mean.
    Count your health instead of your wealth;
    Count on God instead of yourself.

  2. Count Your Blessings

    'Twould better be, by far,
    If you would train your love to grow
    Among the things that are
    Just common to your daily life.

    - William Henry Dawson
    Count Your Blessings
    by William Henry Dawson

    It's strange but true that common things,
    Like sunshine, rain and snow,
    The happy little bird that sings,
    The fragrant flowers that grow;
    The meals with which we're blessed each day,
    The sweet sleep of the night,
    The friends who ever with us stay,
    The shadows and the light,
    The tender care of mother dear,

    The kiss of loving wife,
    The baby prattle that we hear—
    The best things in our life—
    Are not loved by us half so well
    As things that seem more rare.
    For instance some old, broken bell,
    Or stone picked up somewhere;
    An ancient coin with unknown date,
    An arrow head of stone,
    Or piece of broken armor plate
    Worn by some one unknown.
    Exclusive ownership we crave,
    No matter what the prize—
    True from the cradle to the grave,
    Of foolish and of wise.
    Oh, selfish mortal, don't you know
    'Twould better be, by far,
    If you would train your love to grow
    Among the things that are
    Just common to your daily life?
    You've blessings by the score,
    Then why engage in constant strife
    For more, and more, and more?

  3. Thanksgiving

    My heart gives thanks for many things;
    I know not how to name them all.

    - William Stanley Braithwaite
    by William Stanley Braithwaite

    My heart gives thanks for many things;
    For strength to labor day by day,
    For sleep that comes when darkness wings
    With evening up the eastern way.
    I give deep thanks that I'm at peace
    With kith and kin and neighbors, too —
    Dear Lord, for all last year's increase,
    That helped me strive and hope and do.

    My heart gives thanks for many things;
    I know not how to name them all.
    My soul is free from frets and stings,
    My mind from creed and doctrine's thrall.
    For sun and stars, for flowers and streams,
    For work and hope and rest and play —
    For empty moments given to dreams,
    For these my hear gives thanks to-day.

  4. I thank thee God, that I have lived

    by Elizabeth Craven

    I thank thee God, that I have lived
    In this great world and known its many joys:
    The songs of birds, the strongest sweet scent of hay,
    And cooling breezes in the secret dusk;
    The flaming sunsets at the close of day,
    Hills and the lovely, heather-covered moors;
    Music at night, and the moonlight on the sea,
    The beat of waves upon the rocky shore
    And wild white spray, flung high in ecstasy;
    The faithful eyes of dogs, and treasured books,
    The love of Kin and fellowship of friends
    And all that makes life dear and beautiful.

    I thank Thee too, that there has come to me
    A little sorrow and sometimes defeat,
    A little heartache and the loneliness
    That comes with parting and the words 'Good-bye';
    Dawn breaking after weary hours of pain,
    When I discovered that night's gloom must yield
    And morning light break through to me again.
    Because of these and other blessings poured
    Unasked upon my wondering head,
    Because I know that there is yet to come
    An even richer and more glorious life,
    And most of all, because Thine only Son
    Once sacrificed life's loveliness for me,
    I thank Thee, God, that I have lived.

  5. The Things Divine

    by Jean Brooks Burt

    These are the things I hold divine:
    A trusting child's hand laid in mine,
    Rich brown earth and wind-tossed trees,
    The taste of grapes and the drone of bees,
    A rhythmic gallop, long June days,
    A rose-hedged lane and lovers' lays,
    The welcome smile on neighbors' faces,
    Cool, wide hills and open places,

    Breeze-blown fields of silver rye,
    The wild, sweet note of the plover's cry,
    Fresh spring showers and scent of box,
    The soft, pale tint of the garden phlox,
    Lilacs blooming, a drowsy noon,
    A flight of geese and an autumn moon,
    Rolling meadows and storm-washed heights,
    A fountain murmur on summer nights,
    A dappled fawn in the forest hush,
    Simple words and the song of a thrush,
    Rose-red dawns and a mate to share
    With comrade soul my gypsy fare,
    A waiting fire when the twilight ends,
    A gallant heart and the voice of friends.

  6. A Thankful Heart

    by Robert Herrick

    Lord, thou hast given me a cell,
    Wherein to dwell;
    A little house, whose humble roof
    Is weather proof;
    Under the spars of which I lie
    Both soft and dry;
    Where thou, my chamber for to ward,
    Hast set a guard
    Of harmless thoughts, to watch and keep
    Me, while I sleep.

    Low is my porch, as is my fate;
    Both void of state;
    And yet the threshold of my door
    Is worn by th’ poor,
    Who thither come, and freely get
    Good words, or meat.
    Like as my parlour, so my hall
    And kitchen’s small;
    A little buttery, and therein
    A little bin,
    Which keeps my little loaf of bread
    Unchipt, unflead;
    Some brittle sticks of thorn or briar
    Make me a fire,
    Close by whose living coal I sit,
    And glow like it.
    Lord, I confess too, when I dine,
    The pulse is thine,
    And all those other bits that be
    There placed by thee;
    The worts, the purslain, and the mess
    Of water-cress,
    Which of thy kindness thou hast sent;
    And my content
    Makes those, and my belovèd beet,
    To be more sweet.
    ’Tis thou that crown’st my glittering hearth
    With guiltless mirth,
    And giv’st me wassail bowls to drink,
    Spiced to the brink.
    Lord, ’tis thy plenty-dropping hand
    That soils my land,
    And giv’st me, for my bushel sown,
    Twice ten for one;
    Thou mak’st my teeming hen to lay
    Her egg each day;
    Besides, my healthful ewes to bear
    Me twins each year;
    The while the conduits of my kine
    Run cream, for wine:
    All these, and better, thou dost send
    Me, to this end,—
    That I should render, for my part,
    A thankful heart;
    Which, fired with incense, I resign,
    As wholly thine;
    —But the acceptance, that must be,
    My Christ, by Thee.

  7. Nike

    Delicate as grasses
    When they lift and stir —
    One sweet lyric woman—
    I give thanks for her.

    – Bliss Carman
    by Bliss Carman

    What do men give thanks for?
    I give thanks for one,
    Lovelier than morning,
    Dearer than the sun.

    Such a head the victors
    Must have praised and known,
    With that breast and bearing,
    Nike's very own—

    As superb, untrammeled,
    Rhythmed and poised and free
    As the strong pure sea-wind
    Walking on the sea;

    Such a hand as Beauty
    Uses with full heart,
    Seeking for her freedom
    In new shapes of art;

    Soft as rain in April,
    Quiet as the days
    Of the purple asters
    And the autumn haze;

    With a soul more subtle
    Than the light of stars,
    Frailer than a moth's wing
    To the touch that mars;

    Wise with all the silence
    Of the waiting hills,
    When the gracious twilight
    Wakes in them and thrills;

    With a voice more tender
    Than the early moon
    Hears among the thrushes
    In the woods of June;

    Delicate as grasses
    When they lift and stir —
    One sweet lyric woman—
    I give thanks for her.

  8. Common Things

    by Paul Laurence Dunbar

    I like to hear of wealth and gold,
    And El Doradoes in their glory;
    I like for silks and satins bold
    To sweep and rustle through a story.

    The nightingale is sweet of song;
    The rare exotic smells divinely;
    And knightly men who stride along,
    The role heroic carry finely.

    But then, upon the other hand,
    Our minds have got a way of running
    To things that aren't quite so grand,
    Which, maybe, we are best in shunning.

    For some of us still like to see
    The poor man in his dwelling narrow,
    The hollyhock, the bumblebee,
    The meadow lark, and chirping sparrow.

    We like the man who soars and sings
    With high and lofty inspiration;
    But he who sings of common things
    Shall always share our admiration.

  9. Freely Receive, Freely Give

    by Peter Burn

    Repay each act of kindness,
    Return each look of love,
    And not to others' goodness
    Ungrateful let us prove;
    But like the little flower,
    In thanks for what is done,
    Give sweetness for the shower,
    And beauty for the sun.

    If we derive a pleasure
    From that which we receive,
    Let us the self-same measure
    To others freely give;
    Our joy will be the sweeter,
    If we thus practise love,
    The world will be the better,
    And God our works approve.

  10. Recognizing Life's Blessings

  11. Thanksgiving

    by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

    We walk on starry fields of white
    And do not see the daisies;
    For blessings common in our sight
    We rarely offer praises.
    We sigh for some supreme delight
    To crown our lives with splendor,
    And quite ignore our daily store
    Of pleasures sweet and tender.

    Our cares are bold and push their way
    Upon our thought and feeling.
    They hang about us all the day,
    Our time from pleasure stealing.
    So unobtrusive many a joy
    We pass by and forget it,
    But worry strives to own our lives
    And conquers if we let it.

    There's not a day in all the year
    But holds some hidden pleasure,
    And looking back, joys oft appear
    To brim the past's wide measure.

    But blessings are like friends, I hold,
    Who love and labor near us.
    We ought to raise our notes of praise
    While living hearts can hear us.

    Full many a blessing wears the guise
    Of worry or of trouble.
    Farseeing is the soul and wise
    Who knows the mask is double.
    But he who has the faith and strength
    To thank his God for sorrow
    Has found a joy without alloy
    To gladden every morrow.

    We ought to make the moments notes
    Of happy, glad Thanksgiving;
    The hours and days a silent phrase
    Of music we are living.
    And so the theme should swell and grow
    As weeks and months pass o'er us,
    And rise sublime at this good time,
    A grand Thanksgiving chorus.

  12. The Ground Laurel

    As some sweet flower of pleasure
    Upon our path may bloom,
    'Mid rocks and thorns that measure
    Our journey to the tomb.

    - Hannah Flagg Gould
    The Ground Laurel
    by Hannah Flagg Gould

    I love thee, pretty nursling
    Of vernal sun and rain;
    For thou art Flora's firstling,
    And leadest in her train.

    When far away I found thee
    It was an April morn;
    The chilling blast blew round thee,
    No bud had decked the thorn.

    And thou alone wert hiding
    The mossy rocks between,
    Where, just below them gliding,
    The Merrimack was seen.

    And while my hand was brushing
    The seary leaves from thee,
    It seemed that thou wert blushing
    To be disclosed to me.

    So modest, fair and fragrant,
    Where all was wild and rude,
    To cheer the lonely vagrant
    Who crossed thy solitude,—

    Thou didst reward my ramble
    By shining at my feet,
    When, over brake and bramble,
    I sought thy lone retreat,—

    As some sweet flower of pleasure
    Upon our path may bloom,
    'Mid rocks and thorns that measure
    Our journey to the tomb!

  13. Lost Joy

    by Emily Dickinson

    I had a daily bliss
    I half indifferent viewed,
    Till sudden I perceived it stir, —
    It grew as I pursued,

    Till when, around a crag,
    It wasted from my sight,
    Enlarged beyond my utmost scope,
    I learned its sweetness right.

  14. Life

    by Richard Lynott O'Malley

    Life is a rose bush; we hail fortune's blush,
    Nor think of the ills that have tricked us;
    Thus, pleased by the roses we've plucked from the bush,
    We forget the thorns that have pricked us.

  15. Living

    by Edgar A. Guest

    The miser thinks he's living when he's hoarding up his gold;
    The soldier calls it living when he's doing something bold;
    The sailor thinks it living to be tossed upon the sea,
    And upon this very subject no two men of us agree.
    But I hold to the opinion, as I walk my way along,
    That living's made of laughter and good-fellowship and song.

    I wouldn't call it living to be always seeking gold,
    To bank all the present gladness for the days when I'll be old.
    I wouldn't call it living to spend all my strength for fame,
    And forego the many pleasures which to-day are mine to claim.
    I wouldn't for the splendor of the world set out to roam,
    And forsake my laughing children and the peace I know at home.

    Oh, the thing that I call living isn't gold or fame at all!
    It's fellowship and sunshine, and it's roses by the wall.
    It's evenings glad with music and a hearth-fire that's ablaze,
    And the joys which come to mortals in a thousand different ways.
    It is laughter and contentment and the struggle for a goal;
    It is everything that's needful in the shaping of a soul.

  16. As by the dead we love to sit

    by Emily Dickinson

    As by the dead we love to sit,
    Become so wondrous dear,
    As for the lost we grapple,
    Though all the rest are here, —

    In broken mathematics
    We estimate our prize,
    Vast, in its fading ratio,
    To our penurious eyes!

  17. Satisfied

    by Emily Dickinson

    One blessing had I, than the rest
    So larger to my eyes
    That I stopped gauging, satisfied,
    For this enchanted size.

    It was the limit of my dream,
    The focus of my prayer, —
    A perfect, paralyzing bliss
    Contented as despair.

    I knew no more of want or cold,
    Phantasms both become,
    For this new value in the soul,
    Supremest earthly sum.

    The heaven below the heaven above
    Obscured with ruddier hue.
    Life's latitude leant over-full;
    The judgment perished, too.

    Why joys so scantily disburse,
    Why Paradise defer,
    Why floods are served to us in bowls, —
    I speculate no more.

    And know this truth of the human breast,
    That, wanting little, is being blest.

    – Hannah Flagg Gould
    The Old Elm of Newbury

  18. The Value of Little Things

    by William Cutter

    What if the little rain should say,
    "So small a drop as I
    Can ne'er refresh the thirsty earth,
    I'll tarry in the sky!"

    What if a shining beam of noon
    Should in its fountain stay,
    Because its feeble light alone
    Is not enough for day!

    Doth not each rain-drop help to form
    The cool refreshing shower?
    And every ray of light to warm
    And beautify the flower?

  19. Our Blessings

    by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

    Sitting to-day in the sunshine,
    That touched me with fingers of love,
    I thought of the manifold blessings
    God scatters on earth, from above;
    And they seemed, as I numbered them over,
    Far more than we merit, or need,
    And all that we lack is the angels
    To make earth a heaven indeed.

    The winter brings long, pleasant evenings,
    The spring brings a promise of flowers
    That summer breathes into fruition,
    And autumn brings glad, golden hours.
    The woodlands re-echo with music,
    The moonbeams ensilver the sea;
    There is sunlight and beauty about us,
    And the world is as fair as can be.

    But mortals are always complaining.
    Each one thinks his own a sad lot;
    And forgetting the good things about him,
    Goes mourning for those he has not.
    Instead of the star-spangled heavens,
    We look on the dust at our feet;
    We drain out the cup that is bitter,
    Forgetting the one that is sweet.

    We mourn o'er the thorn in the flower,
    Forgetting its odor and bloom;
    We pass by a garden of blossoms,
    To weep o'er the dust of the tomb.
    There are blessings unnumbered about us,—
    Like the leaves of the forest they grow;
    And the fault is our own—not the Giver's—
    That we have not an Eden below.

  20. Recompense

    by Grace Noll Crowell

    I never have had a look at the sea,
    I who would love it so.
    I never have watched from the surf-drenched shore
    The brave ships come and go.
    I do not know how the silent tides
    Unfailingly ebb and flow.

    But God who is wise to His children's needs
    Gives me the wide, low plain,
    He gives me the wondrous, whispering grass,
    The kildee's sweet refrain,
    And my reed-fringed pools are myriad seas
    After the last long rain.

    I never have been where the mountains stand
    But nightly the infinite star-crowned heights
    Speak to my waiting heart,
    And mine are the winds that are mountain-born,
    And of seas they are a part.

  21. The Gift of Time

    by Amos Russel Wells

    The gift of time, God's freest boon to men,
    So steadily outpoured through days and years!
    Thus ever let us yield it back again
    ln liberal lives and consecrate careers.

    The gift of time, for which no gold is weighed,
    Nor least petition offered to the Lord,—
    Shall He not still by gratitude be paid,
    And all our thankful days be His reward?

    The gift of time, fit measure of the heart
    Wherewith our Father wholly loves His own,—
    Be it a symbol of our lesser part,
    Just to be wholly His, and His alone!

  22. Morning

    by Annette Wynne

    Dear Lord, that takes the night,
    Thank you for the morning light;
    When little stars all hide away,
    Thank you for the sun and day!

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