It’s Thanksgiving day in America. While I recognize a good number of readers are not Americans, being thankful is something to which we can all relate. So whether you celebrate Thanksgiving in your culture or not, I suggest we all take some time today to reflect on all our blessings. Even if you are struggling in this season of life, I am confident you can find some things for which to be grateful.
Something amazing happens when we pray prayers of gratitude. Our attitude changes. Our physical countenance improves. Most of us forget how truly blessed we are and take much of our lives for granted. But today, just for a little while, let’s reorient our focus on simply being thankful for everything God has done for us.
There’s something else I’ve noticed when we spend time in prayer being thankful to God: it’s virtually impossible to sin in that moment. Our thoughts are so attuned with His that the temptations of the devil drift away. Therefore, being thankful proves to be an extremely effective weapon in battling Satan. Perhaps it can be done, but I believe it’s very hard to think greedy and selfish thoughts when you are thanking God for His provision for your family. Just as it’s far more difficult to feel down when you smile, it’s virtually impossible to feel in need when you remind yourself of everything God has provided thus far in your life.
Even if you are going through turbulent times, look back over the past year and identify moments of God’s grace and blessing in your life. Perhaps you got a new job, a promotion, or simply held onto your old one in the midst of layoffs. One thing I am confident of if you are reading this: you are alive. You survived another year. How did that happen? Who enabled you to have food for your table and a roof over your head? Who saw to it you were clothed and received care when you were ill? God knows all your needs (Matthew 6:25-34). He loves and cares for you (Matthew 7:9-11; John 3:16). As you examine the past, I am confident you will find He has proven Himself more than faithful. He comforted you when you were in distress. He held You when no one else was around. He is indeed our ever present help in trouble (Psalms 46:1).
You can always point to someone you think has it easier than you, but I’ll bet you can also point to someone who has it worse. Being thankful isn’t a comparison game. It’s recognizing all God has done on your behalf. Being thankful is coming to grips with the realization we would be no where without Him. In fact, if God had done nothing else but send His Son Jesus to die on the cross in your place, we could never stop being thankful to Him. But He has done so much more. Take some time today to reflect on His provision. I strongly encourage you to write down everything for which you are thankful. Pull this list out whenever you feel depressed, forsaken, or hurt. Satan can’t handle a thankful heart; he is too proud to accept that. Being thankful is more than a mindset. It’s the duty – and honor – of every follower of Jesus. Be thankful today.