״Gratitude is the healthiest of all human emotions. The more you express gratitude for what you have, the more likely you will have even more to express gratitude for״.
All of our family remember Aunt Na’ama - when we were children, we called her the 'smiling aunt' who was always calm even though she was very ill. She and my uncle had a big family, living with their 12 children in a tiny apartment, my uncle worked 2 jobs and was making little income.
At least four times a year, the families would gather to spend Shabbat day together. Aunt Na’ama was very weak and suffered from various illnesses. Since she could not be very active, her children faithfully stepped in to help with daily needs and everything in between.
I remember how she would always thank God for everything she had with a natural smile on her face. She was grateful to her children and sisters-in-law for all their help while caring for her 12 children.
After my uncle died unexpectedly, my dear mother, Sarah, loved her sister-in-law and would regularly visit her to to support her - bringing her freshly baked bread and cooked meals. She would help her around the house and encouraged her as she knew how difficult it was for her to cope with daily tasks.
Her other sisters-in-law always worried that something might happen to her because of her physical condition. Despite that, Aunt Na’ama lived to be 98 years old and passed away last year, older than all her sisters-in-law.
What was her secret to living to the age of 98 despite all her illnesses?
Aunt Na'ama chose to be grateful to God in every moment of her life. She dedicated herself to peaceful ways, a calm attitude, having no bitterness towards life or towards others and she was exceptionally generous. Even when she didn’t have much, she believed there was ‘always enough to give’.
Her gratitude triumphed over her sickness - with praise on her lips for God’s provision in her life. She left behind a legacy of warmth and love, expressed to the people around her.
"In everything, give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Messiah Yeshua." – 1 Thessalonians 5:18
Since 1994, when Vision for Israel was established, our aim has been to encourage people to be thankful, no matter where they are. And now is the perfect time to focus on our gratitude for God.
We know you all have your own stories of people who were a blessing and an inspiration in your life. We’d love to hear them! Please share your stories below in the comment section.
May the memory of our family members be a blessing, and may we be so privileged as to live in gratitude for all God’s blessings in our lives!
In His Service,