Thankful for Thankfulness

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Around Thanksgiving time, everyone puts emphasis on being thankful for all of their blessings. How many times have you given thought to being thankful for being thankful? Sounds odd, but have you ever stopped to wonder what the world would be like if no one was thankful for anything? Everyone would take and take, but never give back. They would expect more and never work for anything. The main reason that we are thankful as Christians is because it is natural and obvious for us to be thankful. Romans 1:20 says For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.” God’s blessings around us are so apparent that we don’t have any excuse but to attribute our gifts to God. There is no other explanation for the beauty around us. 

Unfortunately, sin flows from an ungrateful heart. When people are not appreciate of the things they have been given, they steal from others. When husbands are not appreciative of their wives, they lust. When people are jealous of others’ lives, they covet. At the root of each of these sins is an ungrateful heart.

Prideful and entitled individuals have the hardest time saying thank you. If someone feels they deserved what they have been given, thank you doesn’t come naturally because they feel in some way they earned their gift. If an individual is prideful, it can be difficult to humble themselves to say thank you. However, the reason why it’s hard to say thank you should be the reason we do it. Being thankful keeps us humble, kind, and giving. I’ll be the first to admit, it can be hard to give thanks for the grades I receive, the money I make, and leadership positions I hold. I become boastful and believe that I worked hard and I should be rewarded for my hard work. However, God provides us with each and every opportunity and the people in our lives who give us opportunities. Without Him, I wouldn’t be where I am today.

Phillipians 4:19 “And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”

Key Points:

1) God is the only explanation for all of the beauty around us

2) Sin flows from an ungrateful heart

3) Prideful and entitled individuals have the hardest time saying “thank you”

4) The reason why it’s hard to say thank you should be the reason we do it

6 Tips on Being More Thankful

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As the holidays come around, it can be easy to be thankful for everything we have in our lives. However, when the holiday spirit is long gone, how do we maintain thankful hearts? Below are 6 tips to remind yourself how amazing your life truly is! Remember, a thankful heart is a happy heart

1. Share what you’re thankful for with others

It isn’t difficult to rant about the bad days and situations that got your blood boiling, but how often do you hear someone rant about their good day? Being positive leads others to want to be around you more. In turn, having a more positive outlook on life makes you a happier person. Sounds like a win-win! Try making a “thank-dislike-thank sandwich”. Start out with something that brightened your day or made you smile that you are thankful for, followed by something that you didn’t care for (try not be too negative), and end the conversation with another positive uplift. You can even tell this person how thankful you are for them (brownie points)!

2. Keep a journal or a simple list

Of course it is ideal to keep a journal with all of your happiest moments, but sometimes with the busyness of life, it is better to just keep a list. Whichever works for you, try something you can commit to. Try to think of at least 5 things you are thankful for everyday, but be specific. Your kids, your parents, and your dogs can not be recurring on your list everyday!

3. Take pictures

Right now, make an album titled “Thankfulness”. Try to take at least one picture everyday of something you are thankful for. It could be the sunshine, your home, or a slice of pumpkin pie, but be creative! Try to make your album vary and be unique to you and your experiences. When you are feeling down or having a “Negative Nancy” moment, scroll through the pictures to remind yourself of all of the blessings in your life.

4. Pray

Prayer can be a very positive, uplifting experience. It can elevate your mood and increase your hope for the future. Knowing that you have a relationship with the God that provided you with everything you have gives you a sense of security that your life is in His hands. Don’t take for granted his undeserved blessings. Setting aside a time in your day to pray not only allows you to thank God for His gifts, but also gives you time to reflect on all that you are thankful for.

5. Do the little things…

Being thankful doesn’t have to simply be a feeling, but it should also direct your actions. For those you are thankful to, do a little something. If you husband is your concrete support system, make him his favorite treat or leave him a note to express your gratitude. People in your life don’t know you are thankful for them until you express it in some way. This may seem obvious, but I always tell myself “they know I love them”. Which isn’t necessarily true! It can be very uplifting for this person to hear you tell them or let your actions speak for you and do something kind for them.

6. Give Back

In order to not take for granted all of the people and things in your life, spend time with others who are lacking the blessings you have been given. If you are thankful for your parents, mentor an orphan who needs someone to look up to. If you adore your pets, spend time at an animal shelter with animals that don’t have a home. When you find yourself grumbling about your life, it can be very humbling to donate your time to someone who would give anything to have what you have right now. If you are blessed, go be a blessing!