I watched the Academy Awards and felt like something was missing, which I later realized was due to the fact that I didn’t watch the Barbara Walters special beforehand. It’s just not the same if you haven’t seen a celebrity cry on Barbara’s shoulder right before the show. Thankfully, I had a little spare time last night and was able to get all caught up on the celebrity display of waterworks.
Her first interview was with Ellen DeGeneres. I really like Ellen DeGeneres. I remember seeing her on Comedy Central when I was in college and thinking she was hysterical. I love her dry humor, her warmth and her style. And don’t even get me started on how much I love her as the voice of Dory in Finding Nemo.
Anyway, Ellen was talking about the ups and downs of her career and her life. She has had some huge successes, but she’s also had some really painful things that have happened along the way. At one point in the interview, they showed a clip of her first appearance on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson where she did a thing about calling God on the phone. I remembered seeing it years ago and it was great.
At the end of the interview, Barbara Walters asked Ellen what she would say to God if she really could call Him on the phone and Ellen got very teary-eyed (of course, it’s Barbara Walters) and said with such sincerity, ” I’d say thank you. I’ve got nothing but gratitude. My whole life, I’m so blessed. I’m so lucky and I feel it every day”.
Her words convicted me so much that I turned off the T.V.
I don’t know what Ellen’s religious beliefs are and that’s not the point. The point is her overwhelming gratitude at the life she has been given. She recognizes her blessings and it made me ask myself if I’m as quick to recognize all of mine, or do I let myself get consumed with the other things I want?
When I pray, which is really the same as a phone call to God, how much time do I spend thanking Him for all He has already done in my life? Do I tell Him that I realize He’s blessed me more than I’ve ever deserved and honestly, if He never did one thing for me other than sending His son 2,000 years ago to die on a cross, that’s more than I could ever repay?
I would never call up my friends every day and say, “Let me tell you what you can do for me today” and I’m betting if I did, it wouldn’t be long before they started screening my calls. If someone does something nice for me, I am quick to tell them thank you, after all, that’s just good manners. I’d never say, “Well, that’s nice, but if you really want to help me you could…”.
As a mama, I spend lots of time reminding Caroline to say thank you. I tell her that’s what nice people do, we say thank you when people do something for us so they know that they are appreciated.
Why am I so quick to tell the cashier at HEB thank you for the Buddy Bucks, but so slow to tell God thank you for giving me the air that I breathe, the family that I love, the friends that I adore, and the life that is so much more blessed than I deserve?
I never thought I’d say that watching a Barbara Walters special caused me to have a spiritual revelation, but it did. Ellen’s words made me take a look at myself and caused me to stop and just tell Him, thank you.
“Some wandered in desert wastelands, finding no way to a city where they could settle.
Psalm 107: 4-9