1 Oh give thanks to the LORD; call upon his name; make known his deeds among the peoples!
2 Sing to him, sing praises to him; tell of all his wondrous works! - Psalm 105:1-2
Being thankful is a choice. But let’s be honest...being thankful in some circumstances can be quite challenging. When we’re in our rational minds, and things are going fairly well, we know we should choose to be thankful. We can look at our lives and find reasons to be thankful - we can be thankful we have a roof over her head, food in our bellies, families to love. We know the very reason we take a breath every day is because of the generous gift of life that He has given to us, and most of us will praise Him for these things when we think of it. But true gratitude, the type of thankfulness that the psalmist is referring to in this passage is a much deeper attitude than an obedient and courteous, “thank you, God”.
The problem is that living in this broken world is challenging, it can be downright hard and exhausting some days. The world will shift our focus from all the glorious gifts we’ve received to all the things that are wrong, and our hearts become filled with discontent. God despises a heart of discontent. When you are unsatisfied with where God has placed you, or what He has allowed into your life, it’s as if you are telling Him He is wrong. The sovereign God of this universe is not wrong, and he does not make mistakes. God, forgive me for my discontent.
As a point of clarification, I am not referring to the discontent God stirs in your heart when He wants you to change a circumstance. There are times when God moves you to right a wrong, but this discontent comes with action to further His kingdom. The kind of discontent that is the opposite of thankfulness only focuses on the things that are wrong, with no intention to make things right.
We can recognize when this is happening by what is coming out of our mouths - the complaints increase and the praises decrease. We minimize the blessings, and we magnify the problems. It’s a dangerous place to be and we can quickly spiral out of control. We start with the traffic and the weather, we move to our co-workers and our family members, and suddenly there is no joy at all in our lives.
We forget that we need to cultivate the spiritual discipline of thankfulness, just as we grow those other spiritual disciplines. That’s why we find so many references to shouting and singing His praises in scripture. We need to be intentional about increasing our attitude of gratitude if we want to see the joy in our lives grow. Every day, at least once a day, we need to sit down with Him and recognize all that He has given us, and then we need to praise Him for those blessings. Meditating on His Word, and the precious underserved gifts He has showered on us in abundance, will change your heart of discontent to a heart of gratitude. When your heart is filled with gratitude, a supernatural joy will follow.
Press on ~ you are loved 💗
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