Monday, November 19, 2018

On My Heart: Gratitude

It is good to give thanks. 

At Thanksgiving time, and all through the year. 
Even every day.
All through the day.

"Make thankfulness your 
sacrifice to God."
(Psalm 50:14a)

"Giving thanks is a sacrifice
that truly honors Me."
(Psalm 50:23a)

What makes thankfulness so essential, so important?
Is it really that crucial? Why are we prompted to hold
thanks in our hearts and to speak it, to give it away,
to bring honor to God, to bless others with it?

Could it be that it also holds the key to a deeper,
life-giving relationship with our Creator, our God?

"When we thank and praise God, 
His presence inhabits our lives more and more.
We might think of thanksgiving as a portal
to the presence of God."

"Enter His gates with thanksgiving
and His courts with praise.
Give thanks to Him and bless His name."
(Psalm 100:4)

What could this look like for me, for you?

At the start of the day, as we come to Him, come with
thanks on our lips. Develop a habit of praise, of thanks.
In my journal, it has become my habit, to start out
with thanks, to write out my thanks. A record of thanks.
A gift to Him of my thanks. And it fills me up
with His presence, with joy. A gift to Him that brings joy
to Him ... and also to me. Lifting my thoughts off of the
concerns, the tasks; lifting my heart to Him, to joy.

As we practice this giving of thanks, 
"our minds are primed to notice good things, and so we
become more grateful, joyful, and content". 

And in honoring God with our praise, and in becoming more
aware of His presence and His gifts through our thankfulness,
we become a blessing to others. Gratitude overflows in thanks
and words of affirmation and love to those around us.

"But I will sing of Your strength
and will joyfully proclaim
Your faithful love in the morning.
For You have been a stronghold for me,
a refuge in my day of trouble."
(Psalm 59:16)

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