Thursday, May 16, 2019

Gratitude is a Gamechanger

Are you at the end of your rope, hanging on for dear life?  Do you often feel that life is unfair, that nothing good ever happens to you, and that you have had more than your share of grief and pain?  I think we all feel that way at times.  When we do, we have a tendency to indulge in a pity party for one -- to seclude ourselves, lick our wounds, and wallow in our misery.  I know, because I have done my share of it.

Our family has gone through its share of tough times the past few years.  I have tried to teach my children to handle their personal stresses and negative situations by finding reasons to rejoice.  Let's just say, there have been many teachable moments!  And while I have done my best to set the example, I will be the first to admit that I sometimes forget the power of a grateful heart.

I'm not really sure when the light went on for me and I became a thankful person, but as I sat down to journal my prayers this morning I found myself starting nearly every prayer with the words "Thank You."  Gosh, my friends, there are so many reasons to give thanks! 

Do you have a roof over your head?  A car (or maybe three or four) in your driveway?  A job?  Good health?  Are the lights on and the water running?  Is there food in the pantry?  Did you survive yesterday and all its troubles?  Instead of complaining that it's raining, give thanks for the roof!  Rather than whining about yard work, thank God for the health and strength to push a lawnmower and the blessing of a shower to wash off all the dirt when you're finished.

I know there are people who are in the fight of their lives right now, facing health, relationship, and financial challenges that I can't even fathom.  I've had a few of those myself.  I have suffered the painful consequences of very foolish decisions and survived, only by the grace of God.  I have experienced His grace and favor when I didn't deserve them.

Depression is real.  I have suffered that, too.  But I have learned that the dark night of the soul doesn't last forever and that even in the darkest hours, I am never alone.  God is with me.  He always has been, even when I have ignored or denied His presence.

God gave EVERYTHING for me!  His own Son died on the cross to save me from my sins -- past, present, and future.  How can I not be thankful?!  God has promised to work all things together for good to those who love Him and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).  Do you love God?  Do you have any idea just how much He loves you?





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