A few years ago, I felt to have a journal dedicated to thankfulness. At the end of the day I would write down all the things I was grateful for in that day. I did this every day for an entire year. As you can imagine, by the end of the year I had thousands of things – big and small to be grateful for.
Something happened in the process of writing down all the things I was grateful for. It became a habit to be extra aware in my day to day, of things that were good in my life. I didn’t focus on what I lacked anymore, my attention was on the small gifts in the every day.
Did I have things during that time that I was contending for and trusting God with? Of course! But I trained my perspective to focus on the goodness of God amidst the things I was waiting on.
There is always something to be thankful for. Scripture says, ‘Give thanks in ALL circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you’ (1 Thessalonians 5:18). ‘Give thanks ALWAYS for everything …’ (Ephesians 5:20).
Do not be anxious about anything, but IN EVERYTHING by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God’ (Philippians 4:6).
Scripture is quite clear that difficult circumstances do not excuse us from the need to cultivate a grateful heart. In fact often the encouragement to be thankful is married with the acknowledgement that you are having a difficult time.
Thankfulness is a gateway for the goodness in your life. God is attracted to a thankful heart. It tells him that you aren’t ruled by external circumstance, and you trust His nature. Ask Him to show you what the gift is in it the midst of pain and disappointment.
If you have absolutely nothing in your life, but have Jesus, you have everything you need!
Look at the Apostle Paul, chained in prison for the gospel and still he says, ‘everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord’ (Philippians 3:8).
What can you thank God for right now?
A daily devotion for a better way of living.