Gratitude vs. Giving Thanks


Of course “Thursday Thoughts” falls on Thanksgiving…since it’s always on a Thursday…awesome! What better way to share a few thoughts than on Thanksgiving? 🙂 I’m just going to write whatever comes to mind, because I have SO much to be thankful for…AND to be GRATEFUL for! So what’s the difference, between being thankful and being grateful? Not much, but I thought it was intriguing enough to look into.

According to Merriam-Webster, here are the separate definitions


 adjective ˈthaŋk-fəl

: glad that something has happened or not happened, that something or someone exists, etc.
: of, relating to, or expressing thanks

Full Definition of THANKFUL

:  conscious of benefit received <for what we are about to receive make us truly thankful>
:  expressive of thanks <thankful service>
:  well pleased :  glad <was thankful that it didn’t rain>
— thank·ful·ness noun



 adjective ˈgrāt-fəl

: feeling or showing thanks : feeling or showing thanks to someone for some helpful act

Full Definition of GRATEFUL

a :  appreciative of benefits received

b :  expressing gratitude <grateful thanks>

a :  affording pleasure or contentment :  pleasing

b :  pleasing by reason of comfort supplied or discomfort alleviated

— grate·ful·ly  adverb
— grate·ful·ness noun

So while they are very similar, I get the impression that thankfulness is being appreciative of a more temporary or itemized instance, like the example they give: “thankful that it didn’t rain”.  And while they both recognized the expression of giving thanks, I like this definition for being grateful: “affording pleasure or contentment”; I then clicked on “affording” and it states “to be able to bear, pay for, supply or provide”, which in context sounds like the attitude of gratitude (I love that phrase, don’t you?) can be embodied by both the giver and the receiver. 

So while in a moment we can feel thankful for something, it’s my ambition to convey and truly feel gratitude as a provider of contentment and one who appreciates the benefits and comforts I am blessed with in everyday life, as well as those supplied to me by the generosity of others. 

On that note…
Happy Thanksgiving!

May your hearts (and bellies) be full 🙂

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