“Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is Gods will for you in Christ Jesus.”
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
I have a picture frame that hangs in my bathroom that says, “Begin Each Day With A Grateful Heart.” If I am being very real with you all, I have to admit that this is not my everyday life. I wish I could say that I begin each day with a grateful heart, that I kneel at the foot of my bed and pray to the Lord every morning and thank him for what I have, but this unfortunately is not so. Instead of prayers of thanksgiving, I wake up most mornings in a panic because I am running behind, I don’t know what to wear, or forget to eat my breakfast…life is just…BUSY.
In a world where the new norm is being busy, this mantra is, I am sure, difficult for everyone to follow. Quiet time in the mornings is replaced with sleeping in, looking at our Instagram as soon as we wake up, or checking the latest posts on Facebook. We are constantly looking for connection with the world but miss the most important connection of all. Why is it that we go straight to technology or these digital connections rather than being with our Heavenly Father each and every morning? Is it because we can physically see these photos or posts and know what people are up to yet can’t physically see God? Is it because we crave attention more from our followers rather than from our creator?
I believe that starting off a day with a grateful heart is difficult because it is not a passive activity, but an active one. You have to actively search your heart for things to give thanks about versus scrolling through your phone looking at photos that your friends posted. Being grateful requires attention, care, and work. And in a world of busyness…it is always difficult to find a time to sacrifice and be grateful. Yet God’s word calls us to be have a grateful heart:
"Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ...”
"Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness."
"Give thanks to the Lord for he is good, his love endures forever."
Today I wanted to dig deeper into what a grateful heart may look like and what it can do for your spirit.
Having a grateful heart:
Takes the focus off of ourselves and helps us focus back on God.
Keeps us in a posture of humility. Giving thanks to God acknowledges that every good thing comes from HIM, not ourselves.
Reminds us that God is our Provider.
Does not leave room for grumbling or complaining. (You can’t be thanking God and complaining to him at the same time, right?!)
Refreshes your spirit and renews you!
Opens the door for your to be able to hear the Lord and grow closer to him.
What has been preventing you from giving thanks to the Lord? Is it a grudge you have against him? Do you feel like he has forgotten you? Are you ashamed of something in your past? Are you tired of giving thanks?
Think about it. Pray about it. Seek him today and ask him to reveal what needs to be revealed.
We have a choice each and every day to give thanks, even if that means starting off with the little things like having a hot shower or food to eat! I challenge us all today to take time each and every day to do this and watch how our hearts can be transformed by just learning to be grateful each and every moment we can!
Father, thank you so much for today. Thank you for my family, my home, my job, my friends...Lord thank you for your son! Thank you for sending him to die on that cross for me and my sins all so that I could grow and be closer to you each and every day. I pray Father that you begin to change my heart as I attempt to give thanks to you every day. I know I am not perfect, but I will do my utmost to praise you and love you every day. Thank you for loving me for me, messiness and all. I praise you, and give you thanks for everything.