I was going through a few tweets today, the last day of 2014.
One tweet particularly caught my attention and compelled me to write a quick blog about it.
“There are different ways to look back on 2014 and to look ahead to 2015. But I’ve found the best perspective is one of thankfulness.” (Joseph Bonifacio)
The Apostle Paul encourages us to
“give thanks in all circumstances;
for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”
(1 Thes. 5:18)
Someone said that a heart of thanksgiving is your best antidote against grumbling and complaining. And I’ve found that to be true.
At the end of every year, our family sit down together and list down everything we are thankful to God for… each and every one we can think of. Yes, this would mean we would end up with long lists because we would thank God for every item, friendship, gadget, blessing, family activity, gift, appliance, furniture, clothing… as in anything we can think of that we are thankful to God for.
Giving thanks doesn’t only honor God but it also heals our souls that are so prone to entitlement. We begin to think that we deserve something because we have worked hard or haven’t been naughty but nice.
IN ALL CIRCUMSTANCES
We are told to give thanks in all circumstances not for all circumstances.
There are a lot of things that happened to us this year that we wish didn’t happen. We wish our uncle didn’t get cancer or mom and dad didn’t have to break up or got laid off from work. But giving thanks in all circumstance means that though what happened didn’t seem the most ideal, we, in faith, give thanks because of the assurance that God is able to cause all things to work together for our good. (Romans 8:28)
FOR THIS IS THE WILL OF GOD
A heart of gratefulness is what God is looking for. It is very easy to find the splotches on a white wall. We are quick to point out the negative in situations we wished worked out according to our plan.
But the will of God is for us to give thanks in all circumstances.
Here’s a practical application. Get a piece of paper and begin writing down at least 10 things you are thankful to God for. When you get to ten, just keep writing. You’ll realized there are a lot more things to thank God for than what you had listed in your mind.
Here are 7 quotes on thankfulness to fuel your desire to give thanks.
“Perhaps it takes a purer faith to praise God for unrealized blessings than for those we once enjoyed or those we enjoy now.” ― A.W. Tozer
“We would worry less if we praised more. Thanksgiving is the enemy of discontent and dissatisfaction.” ― H.A. Ironside
“It is impossible to feel grateful and depressed in the same moment.” ~ Naomi Williams
“If we magnified blessings as much as we magnify disappointments, we would all be much happier.” ~ John Wooden
“If God gave it to me,” we say “it’s mine. I can do what I want with it.” No. The truth is that it is ours to thank Him for and ours to offer back to Him, ours to relinquish, ours to lose, ours to let go of – if we want to find our true selves, if we want real Life, if our hearts are set on glory.” ― Elisabeth Elliot
“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought; and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.” – G.K. Chesterton
“In ordinary life, we hardly realize that we receive a great deal more than we give, and that it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.” – Dietrich Bonhoeffer