Thankfulness. What are some things that come to your mind when you think on that word? My train of thought leads me towards things like saying thank you to people when they do something for me, having a heart of thankfulness towards God, not having an attitude of entitlement, and living a life of gratefulness.
Those all sound like nice things in our minds, but when put to practice they can actually be pretty hard! Why? Because as part of our fallen nature, we are naturally inclined to ungratefulness and dissatisfaction.
But as Christians, we have the power through Christ to live lives that reflect Him, which means our lives are different from the worlds. The world lives for, “What’s next?”, never being satisfied with what they have. We as Christians should look at what we have and say, “What can I GIVE?”. See the difference there? We have a heavenly mindset, whereas they have an earthly mindset. That’s not to say our mindset can’t slip away from heavenly things and onto earthly, it’s happened to me more than once. It’s a constant struggle, but one we can win through the power of our Savior.
Let’s look into a few things that can help us keep our mindset above, and cultivate a heart of gratefulness to our Savior.
Spend time with Jesus.
When we spend time with our Savior, we are learning about Him, taking His Words – His commands – to heart. And written all throughout the Bible we read example upon example about thankfulness and what happens when our priorities are either here on earth or up above in heaven.
Memorize verses pertaining to this subject.
As I mentioned before, there is a plethora of verses pertaining to this subject so why not memorize some of them so they come to mind when we are tempted in this area? Here are a few for consideration:
1 Chronicles 16:34
1 Thessalonians 5:18
Colossians 3:15, 17
And so many more…
Ask God to create a heart of thankfulness in you! He loves to give good gifts to His children and this is no exception. So ask Him, He is always there to listen and knows the deepest thoughts and desires of your heart.
Take inventory of what you have.
What do I mean by this? Look around your home. Do you have food in the fridge? Do you have clothes in your closet? Do you have a bed covered in warm blankets? Do you have soap in your shower? Does your roof have no leaks? Then you are so, so blessed! There are so many people in this world who have nothing but a few rags to cover their bodies, and here we are with all of this and yet struggling with ungratefulness. We truly have SO much to be grateful for! We have so much, even beyond what we actually need. So, look around at that which you have and then…
Look and see what you can give.
What can you give of what you have? We all have something we can give – every single one of us – so here’s a list to help you get started:
While at the grocery store; is there anything you can bless the food bank with? (*food banks can do far more with monetary donations than physical items however, so that is also an option)
Go through your closet; I guarantee you’ll find at least something you can give to someone you know in need or to your local shelter or non-profit thrift shop.
Use your talent! Do you know how to play an instrument? Offer to give lessons to children in a family in your group who you know would love to learn, but just can’t afford the expense. Can you sing? Use that talent to bring happiness to others whether it be in your Church or maybe in a local elderly care center. Are you an artist? You can teach others your skill, or create pieces to give to others or to sell and give the profits to Christian organizations to bring help to others.
A thankful heart manifests itself outwardly too, so be that ray of sunshine! Shine your thankful, happy heart into all the areas of your life and the people therein. Set an example.
I’ve seen the effects in my own life of just purposing to be thankful. I can find myself looking at my life and only seeing the things I wish I had, when in reality, if I would just change my mindset to what I have already been gifted from God, it changes the entire thought! Keeping my eyes on heaven, I know that I have enough. And the things I need will always be taken care of by God. There is no need for worry. As Philippians 4:6-7 (NKJV) so beautifully puts it, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be known to God, and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” What a beautiful way to sum up this article!
So friends, keep your eyes on heaven and take every opportunity you can to practice thankfulness and to remove unsatisfaction from your life. You will experience so much joy as you lead your life in line with the beautiful plan our Savior had for us all along. I’m taking this challenge as much as giving it – will you join me?
Hey friends! I'm Livy, founder and designer of CLM. First and foremost I am a follower of Jesus, and besides that I am a ministry leader, small business operator and writer. I love putting words to paper, going to Starbucks, photography, connecting with friends and much more. This is a place for me to share encouragement with you all. I hope you will enjoy your stay. :)