What if a couple said, “I love you,” on their wedding day and then never uttered those words again to each other the rest of their lives? That would be ridiculous, right?
Christians often live this way when they only thank God one day a year. Do you offer thanksgiving to God every day, or just on the official national holiday that draws your minds to thankfulness? True Thanksgiving shouldn’t be just once a year.
So, why is it so difficult to give thanks?
– Maybe you feel like a child put on the spot with adults pressing the issue, “What are you thankful for?”
– Maybe your life is just so very busy that there’s no time to stop and think about what you have to do tomorrow, let alone taking a moment to thoughtfully consider what makes you grateful.
– Maybe you want to give thanks, but there is so much misery and discomfort in your day-to-day living that it’s way easier to grumble or just feel emotionally numb, instead.
You’ve seen the cute little suggestions of how to muster up thankfulness. Every Thanksgiving they seem to roll around. You might even manage to mumble something about how thankful you are for your family or for a beautiful day or for your brand new car, house or electronic gadget.
However, true thanksgiving is more than a note scribbled on a leaf-shaped paper attached to a branch and called a “Thanksgiving tree.” It’s more than saying “Thank you” out of polite manners. It’s more than coming up with a one-time thankful thought that wows the family members who are all sitting prepared to eat turkey.
True thanksgiving comes from an attitude of realizing how amazing God is and facing the reality of the alternative to walking in the presence of God.
Maybe you feel like God is really just so far away and doesn’t have time for the details of your life. Wouldn’t it be amazing to always know that God is near and enjoying our company?
Being thankful is how believers enter into God’s presence. The Bible says that it is in giving thanks that we experience the presence of God.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving, into his courts with praise. Give thanks to him, and bless his name. —Psalms 100:4
When it comes down to it, it can be quite difficult to stir up an attitude of gratitude day in and day out, on Monday mornings before you’ve had your cup of coffee or during days that offer pain and trials.
One way to create a heart filled with praise and thankfulness is to start singing. No worry if you can’t carry a tune, and no need to burst into song at every turn as if you’re part of a theatrical musical. Just sing, alone in your shower or as you sit in traffic, or anytime you want to feel grateful.
Sing to Yahweh with thanksgiving. Sing praises on the harp to our God. —Psalms 147:7
Another way to remain thankful on days other than Thanksgiving is to take a few minutes to list things that you appreciate about living:
– Be thankful that you woke up
– Be thankful for the sunset
– Be thankful for friends
– Be thankful you are breathing. Breathe in and breathe out, and be thankful.
– Be thankful for having food to eat
– Be thankful for your church and other believers
– Be thankful for the color blue, yellow or pink
– Be thankful that God has promised to work out everything for your good, if you trust Him
– Be thankful that you have a Savior
List anything and everything you are thankful for. Nothing is too big or too small. List them all. Then go down the list and read it out loud. When you hear yourself reading the things you are thankful for, you will discover that with thankfulness comes faith. While your gratitude builds, you will find yourself gaining faith as well while you listen to yourself speak.
So faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God. —Romans 10:17, KJV