View this email with images Forward this email to a friend.
the Miracle Chase Miracle Club Online

Gratitude embraces all of life:
the good and the bad,
the joyful and the painful,
the holy and the not so holy.

-Henri Nouwen 

November 17, 2011                                          

          This November, we are grateful for the journey we began a year ago with the publication of The Miracle Chase.  We thank all of you - our readers, the staff at Sterling Publishing, bookstore, library and conference event organizers as well as our generous book reviewers for your support.  When we imagined the Ripple Effect of miracles,  we embraced “riding the wave” wherever it took us – we just didn’t know it would take us on so many  transcontinental flights, require turning public speaking experience into inspirational workshops, and building a Platform from the ground up.  You have shared with us gifts of time, of story, and even an original song - now playing on our website's homepage - written by the talented Tess Dunn, a remarkable teenage singer-songwriter who battles cystic fibrosis and knows a thing or about survival and gratitude.  In the following article, Meb reflects on her own experiences of Thanksgiving and encourages us to be grateful for all that Life brings.   
Joan, Katie and Meb 

                 The American Thanksgiving conjures up images of abundance, a shared meal celebrating gifts of family, food, and friends.  I think it interesting that in America Thanksgiving is a day, written into statute, where we are “assigned” gratitude by our legislators - a national holiday set aside primarily to give thanks.  I reflect on holidays past, Martha Stewart turkeys and Julia Child pumpkin pies, some holidays stressful, some wonderful.  In my family of origin, Thanksgiving took more than six hours to prepare, but was eaten in twelve minutes, precisely the same twelve minutes as the Thanksgiving football game half-time.  That is what happens in a house full of brothers.  After I married, our family tradition was to forgo football entirely, say Grace, then hold hands and go one-by-one around the table saying one thing for which we were thankful.  Later, when the kids were teens and thought this tradition over-bearing, we added an out for them; they could say one thing they were thankful for, or tell about one experience they had in the last year we didn’t know.  That latter option, when selected, became a starting point for animated family conversation!

     Something in me resonates with those early Pilgrims and Native Americans who held the first feast after tremendous loss of life, crops, and dreams.  These good people gave thanks for coming through hard times, sharing in the relative abundance of their first good harvest.  That first feast was ever more celebratory because it was not easily achieved, and represented not only the fruitfulness of a year’s hard work, but the pain and suffering of so many during the same period of time.  To be truly grateful, it seems to me, one must give thanks for all that Life brings.

     Looking at Gratitude in this way, all Life is a gift.  Being grateful means being thankful for everything one experiences, whether we like all those experiences or not.  For me, Gratitude has become a kind of personal discipline.  To be truly grateful for my life, I have to honor and reclaim every moment of it. I can’t be selectively grateful. Each moment has led me to the next, and to the life I have now.  Each moment is special - even the hard ones.

     The call to be grateful is a call to trust that each life experience we are given is food for the soul and an opportunity to claim a more deeply spiritual life.  As Henri Nouwen, an internationally renowned priest and author writes, “Gladness and sadness are never separate, joy and sorrow really belong together, mourning and dancing are part of the same movement.”  To be truly alive, we have to - we must - live it all.

     This Thanksgiving, I encourage you to hold hands around the table and give thanks, not just for the things that you know that are good in your life, but also for life’s challenges.  Give thanks for it all - for all is Grace. 

Visit the Miracle Club Online
the Miracle Chase | Available Online | Buy the Book
Upcoming Events

Texas Conference for Women
Houston, TX
Expert Exchange Session
"Strategies for Successful Transitions and Second Acts"
Thursday, November 17th

Barnes & Noble Bookstore
Emeryville, CA
Blind Babies Foundation
Author's Event and Book Fair
Sunday, November 27th
2 pm-5 pm
5604 Bay Street

Massachusetts Conference for Women
Boston, MA
Expert Exchange Session
"Strategies for Successful Transitions and Second Acts"
Thursday, December 8th

Thank you to the public libraries in Haverford, PA, Marblehead, MA and Concord, NH for naming The Miracle Chase as a staff pick.

Earlier editions of this enewsletter are available at

If you know of any venues where you think The Miracle Chase would make for a great discussion, please let us know.

Any thoughts or suggestions for improving this enewsletter can be sent to our blog at


Joan, Katie and Meb
co-authors of The Miracle Chase
It's About Survival
"Liz’s ability to feel grateful for life is one of her gifts to me and to the world. Again and again, I am stunned by the way my daughter, the survivor, looks at living. I want her faith, her joy in the moment, and her courage. I want to warm up to the world and feel blessed, even as I face evil and death."