Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Gratitude Blog Hop

Today we are participating in the WoMen's Literary Cafe Gratitude Hop.  From the TBR Pile has been paired up with R. S. Guthrie, author of Black Beast: A Clan of MacAulay Novel. 
The WoMen's Literary Cafe is very thankful for all of the support from bloggers, reviewers, and readers during the Come Back To Me book launch and 99 cent event

As a thank you, we are giving away Black Beast: A Clan of MacAulay Novel for free today only. For your free copy, visit Smashwords and enter in this code  SN36Y at checkout.

Make sure to check out the linky list below to see the other blogs included in this hop!

SynopsisDecorated Denver Detective Bobby Macaulay has faced down a truckload of tragedy over recent years. The death of his partner; the loss of his own leg in the line of duty; the companionship of his beloved wife to cancer; his faith in God to his inner demons.

After the man who ruined his leg and killed his first partner is executed, Macaulay becomes the lead detective investigating the Sloan's Lake murders. The method of killing in this double-homicide is so heinous it leads Macaulay and his partner down an ever-darkening path—one that must be traversed if they are to discover the evil forces behind the slaughter.

Just when Bobby Macaulay is questioning the very career that has been his salvation, he will discover a heroic history buried within his own family roots: The Clan MacAulay—a deep family lineage of protectors at the very core of a millenniums-long war against unimaginable evil.

Mr. Guthrie shared some thoughts about gratitude with us:

Praise the bridge that carried you over. 
~George Colman

It’s a great notion. Unfortunately in our busy lives, we many times forget that nothing we do could have been accomplished without a bridge, built for us by another. I know what you are thinking:
My mind. The things that I think—even my opinion about what was just written—are mine.

My heart.

My soul.

Mine, mine, mine.

Also a fabulous notion. But untrue. You owe debts of gratitude to your ancestors, providing a lineage for you, that you might grace this world at precisely this moment. Your parents, or your stepparents, or your grandparents, or a sibling, or a mentor…more than likely your mental and emotional formation was not spontaneously combusted in your head or your heart.

And if you believe in a higher power, perhaps for even your soul you owe a measure of thanks.

The point is, we are busy creatures. We probably want to thank everyone who has built a bridge for us to cross over—but too often, we don’t. Take a moment, right now, to consider someone who has recently given you a way to walk from one place in your life to where you are now. Decide to express your gratitude. It’s not difficult. 

Send some flowers.

Pick up the phone.

Launch a free e-card to their inbox.

There are easily a hundred ways you could make that person’s day by simply thanking them. Put yourself in their shoes. You undoubtedly do things for others—you build bridges, too. And no, you don’t do it in order to garner gratitude, or to gain commensurate bridges in return. You do it because it feels good to do it. You do it because others need help, too.
But doesn’t it feel grand when someone takes the time to acknowledge what you’ve done for them?

Yes. For most of us, that is more than enough fuel to keep us moving along. For many of us, it can make our day, plain and simple.

Gratitude is a funny thing. The dictionary definition is anything but exciting. It means “thankfulness”. That’s pretty much it. And if you look up “thankfulness”, it says “to feel grateful”. Not a necessarily poetic concept, is it?

But, so often, words put into practice far outweigh the significance of their printed counterparts.

Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping
a present and not giving it. 
~William Arthur Ward

And here, dear reader, is the rub. When gratitude is unexpressed—even when we feel it in our hearts—it is relegated back to a simple word. Think about it. Who would buy a present, wrap it, and never deliver it to the recipient? Yes, it could happen. But not often. And think about the emotional worth of the present, once tossed into the closet with the tennis rackets and next winter’s clothing.

Just a box with last year’s wrapping paper, isn’t it?

Now think about the same gift, given to a friend or a daughter or a person in need. Imagine the joy it might bring. See the look on the face of the person who receives it.



But it would, at the very least, far exceed the utter isolation of a gift un-given.

Gratitude is the memory of the heart. 
~Jean Baptiste Massieu
It really is, you know. And people who give it get just as much from the exchange as those who receive it. Memories grow exponentially when shared with others, because not only has one memory been shared, but there is also now a remembrance of the moment of sharing.
Gratitude is the same way. When we share it, we also pay it forward—we extend other’s gratitude to us in the same offering. And the people to whom we are grateful, they will share their own thanks with others. Like a wave of positive thought, such gifts travel on forever.
The great thing is, thankfulness—gratitude—costs us nothing to give, but it reaps limitless reward. It really doesn’t even cost time, not relatively speaking anyway:

A few moments to pick up a phone and call; ten minutes to write an email—less time than it takes to drive to the barista and order a warm espresso.

So do it. Right now. Remember the person you thought of earlier? The one who built that bridge so recently? Reach out. Thank them for it. Show them you are grateful and that you haven’t forgotten.

And create another memory for the heart. 

Thank you, Mr. Guthrie!

About the author:
R.S. Guthrie is a Mystery/Horror writer and author of Black Beast: A Clan of MacAulay Novel. Black Beast is the first in a series featuring Denver Detective Bobby Macaulay. The second book in the series, LOST, releases in time for Christmas, 2011. Guthrie started "Read a Book, Make a Difference", a site that showcases compassionate authors who are giving back. Guthrie lives in Colorado with his wife, three Australian Shepherds, and a Chihuahua who thinks she is a 40 lb. Aussie.

Blog link:

Dont forget to visit the other blogs on the hop!


James said...

Nice blog Rob. You got it right with the bridge. We all need a helping hand in life and I am humbled by all the bridge builders out there.

kathie said...

Beautifully said! I love the quotes you chose--especially the one about feeling gratitude but not expressing it. I do that so often! I'm glad we had this opportunity to stop and actually say thanks! Really great post.

J. A. Bennett said...

What a lovely thought! I think gratitude fills our life with more good things than we could put into it if we tried on our own :)

Small Town Shelly Brown said...

That was beautiful.

Laurie Carlson said...

Mr. Guthrie,
First, thank you SO much for your book being free today! I will surely check itout! I LOVE mystery/suspense/thrillers like these! I LOVED your thoughts on Gratitude! VERY beautiful! Gratitude is always a wonderful thing to give back to people, or even 'just' to give! Thank YOU!
Happy Thanksgiving!
Laurie Carlson

Catherine Lee said...

I just grabbed the book from Smashwords. Thanks for the giveaway.


Sheila Deeth said...

I love that William Arthur Ward quote. Thank you. Thank you for the post. And thank you for the free book!