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On Being Thankful


Time for Gratitude and Thankfulness

If we have faith in humankind
And respect for what is earthly
And an unfaltering belief
In peace and love and understanding
This could be heaven here on earth. 
Heaven’s in our hearts. — Tracy Chapman’s “Heaven’s Here on Earth”

In the U.S., we observe the Thanksgiving holiday on the fourth Thursday of November—the day before Black Friday. No matter where you live, I send warm regards and best wishes to you and your family as we enter this year’s waning months.

Sometimes I find there are better words to express myself. Such is the case with my annual Thanksgiving post. Since 2007, I have published the powerful and enduring lyrics from Tracy Chapman’s song, “Heaven’s Here on Earth.” It is a hauntingly beautiful song with a soul-stirring, hopeful message.

If you are reading this blog, I hope you are as blessed as I am. That’s because so many people will never have the opportunity to live a privileged life with computers, mobile devices, cars, warm homes, plenty of food, and unprecedented abundance. So it’s an excellent time to look around and count our blessings.

The Greatest Gift

I am grateful for what I have. I think the best gift a parent can give is unconditional love, which I have always had from my parents, siblings, extended family, close friends, and of course, my beautiful wife and best friend, Mary.

In 202e1, Tracy Chapman’s “Heaven’s Here On Earth” lyrics from her New Beginnings album are as poignant as ever.

You can look to the stars in search of the answers
Look for God and life on distant planets
Have your faith in the ever after
While each of us holds inside the map to the labyrinth

And heaven’s here on earth
We are the spirit the collective conscience
We create the pain and the suffering and the beauty in this world

Heaven’s here on earth
In our faith in humankind
In our respect for what is earthly
In our unfaltering belief in peace and love and understanding

I’ve seen and met angels wearing the disguise
Of ordinary people leading ordinary lives
Filled with love, compassion, forgiveness and sacrifice

Heaven’s in our hearts
In our faith in humankind
In our respect for what is earthly
In our unfaltering belief in peace and love and understanding

Look around
Believe in what you see
The kingdom is at hand
The promised land is at your feet
We can and will become what we aspire to be

If Heaven’s here on earth
If we have faith in humankind
And respect for what is earthly
And an unfaltering belief that truth is divinity
And heaven’s here on earth

I’ve seen spirits
I’ve met angels
I’ve touched creations beautiful and wondrous
I’ve been places where I question all I think I know
But I believe, I believe, I believe this could be heaven

We are born inside the gates with the power to create life
And to take it away
The world is our temple
The world is our church
Heaven’s here on earth

If we have faith in humankind
And respect for what is earthly
And an unfaltering belief
In peace and love and understanding
This could be heaven here on earth
Heaven’s in our heart

Why I’m Hopeful

I’ve never seen such divisions and angry disagreements between people as we have today. There are reasons for anxiety all around. That’s not the point. If we learn to love and trust, we have a shot. So it seems that love and trust work best on a one-to-one human scale. If we disagree, I agree to accept your feelings and positions as valid for you without judgment. So I will do my best to understand how and why you feel as you do. With luck, you will do the same for me.

I don’t think we can change the world to a better place on a macro scale. It’s got to come from the human heart and mind. I’m not ready to give up on making heaven here on earth a reality. I believe we can become our highest selves, and in the spirit of Tracy Chapman, on this Thanksgiving, I send you my best wishes for peace, love, and understanding between all people.

If we have faith in humankind
And respect for what is earthly
And an unfaltering belief
In peace and love and understanding
This could be heaven here on earth
Heaven’s in our hearts.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Barney_sig_blu_100


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  • Dear Barney Davy

    I love the thanksgiving message that you use that you wish all mankind to be in peace. There is a way that can happen not by mankind finding the solution themselves. I refer to another. Song artist John Lennon was also looking for world peace and he asked a religious person if it was possible?
    The person then showed him about god’s kingdom a prayer that he had asked his own disciples to pray for. This person showed John Lennon all the blessings that this Kingdom would bring to mankind because as Jesus and later his disciples would teach in the bible this Kingdom is a real government that will rule over mankind. Check out the lyrics that John Lennon uses in his song Imagine and you will see some of the blessings God’s government will bring.

    P.S if you wish to find out any further information on god’s kingdom I am willing to answer any questions you may have at [email protected] or youn can visit JW.ORG

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