On Tuesday, June 30, 2020, Brother Stephen Bunnell, the university public safety director at BYU-Idaho, spoke during the BYU-Idaho Devotional.

Brother Bunnell’s talk entitled “Gratitude and a Thankful Heart,” encouraged all people to remember the blessings in their lives and to be thankful for them, and for the people close to them as well. 

“Brothers and sisters, I challenge you to cultivate a thankful heart and express gratitude to your Heavenly Father for the challenges and opportunities he has crafted specifically for you,” Bunnell said during his devotional talk. “Take time to tell the people in your life whether they are your spouse, children, parents, siblings, roommates, co-workers, and so on that you are grateful for them. Let them know why they are a blessing in your life. Doing so will open lines of communication, and conversations will flow. These conversations will bring blessings from heaven.”

Bunnell gave many examples from his personal life to show how he’s tried to stay grateful. 

In an interview with BYU-Idaho Radio, Bunnell said he chose to cover this topic because of a talk he read from Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf, an apostle for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 2014.

“I was reading through President Uchtdorf’s talk…he spoke on gratitude…and it touched me,” Bunnell said in the interview. 

Bunnell said that during the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s important to remember blessings because, under challenging circumstances, we can sometimes blame God for the problems we face. 

Bunnell said he thanks those close to him to remain thankful. 

“When you have gratitude and thankfulness in your heart, and you express that to those around you, you are the recipient of many blessings,” Bunnell said. “I’ve become more aware of that…just by telling people, ‘Thank you…thank you for being a part of my life.’” 

Given the difficult circumstances with the COVID-19 pandemic and other worldwide trials, Bunnell’s talk serves as a pleasant reminder that not only are there good things in the world but that we should, most importantly, remember those good things that can get outshined by the troubling waters of life.