A modern day philosopher from Minnesota, Garrison Keillor, suggests this prayer that is particularly valuable at Thanksgiving: “Thank you, God, for this good life, and forgive us if we do not love it enough.”

It’s not a new idea. Medieval mystic Meister Eckhart once said, “If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is ‘Thank you,’ it will be enough.” He is suggesting that when we recognize the ways in which we have been blessed, our entire perspective changes and we begin to see the world as filled with abundance and life. Saying thank you is like unlocking a door through which appreciation and blessing will come into our lives.

There are so many reasons for us to be thankful—even in the midst of uneasiness in our culture and losses in our own lives. Perhaps the most fundamental Thanksgiving prayer of all is from Psalm 90, the oldest of all the psalms: “Lord, you have been our dwelling place throughout all generations.”

It is comforting to think that as we gather around the table with friends and family in gratitude and thanksgiving, we are doing what the human family has always done: taking a moment to remember and to say thank you for life itself, with all of the ups and downs, in all circumstances.

May this Thanksgiving be a time of blessing and gratitude for you, and may the warmth of God’s divine care be kindled in your heart.