Do you ever find it hard to just be thankful? We compare ourselves to those who have more, instead of looking to Jesus—the GIVER of all good things. He has given us everything we need for life (2 Peter 1:3). Check this story out…
“How many loaves do you have?” Jesus asked. “Seven,” they replied. He told the crowd to sit down on the ground. When He had taken the seven loaves and given thanks, He broke them and gave them to His disciples to distribute to the people, and they did so.
I love this story. The disciples only have seven loaves of bread. Seven. Seven loaves to feed a large crowd of over 4,000 people. I’m no math major, but I know that 7 loaves of bread doesn’t even make a dent to feed a crowd that size. Yet, at the end of this day, the disciples had leftovers! Instead of focusing on where they were lacking, Jesus shows His friends a heart of gratitude and gives thanks for what they had!
Gratefulness shifts our perspective.
Thankfulness is a matter of the heart. Here are some CPR tips to resuscitate and revive the thankful heart we desire…
- Cultivate an attitude of gratitude. “Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and His courts with praise! Give thanks to Him; bless His name!” (Psalm 100:5) A grateful heart protects us from feelings of negativity and pessimism, and opens our eyes to truly see how great God’s love for us is! Waking up each morning, take a minute and intentionally bring an offering of praise and thanks.
- Practice. “Practice…We talkin’ ‘bout practice” (for all you basketball fans J). Practice thankfulness! “Rejoice always. Pray continually. Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18) Practice and train your heart to thank God for each gift in your life. Count the gifts that our Father gives graciously each day. Count little things like the beginning of a new day, the air you breathe, food, shelter, clean water, family, friends, your job… Count the grace upon grace that God has given. Be creative and have fun!
- Recognize the Giver. James 1:17 says, “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” Write down all the things you’re thankful for. Make a journal. Talk to God about the things you’re thankful for. Tell your friends. Practice publically thanking God for His provision. Remember He is the Gift Giver; He gave the ultimate gift of His Son, Jesus Christ!
What are you thankful for? Let’s do an experiment together! For a week, keep a gratitude journal. Write down 10 things each day you are thankful for. Share with your family what you are thankful for!