The Power of A Grateful Heart…
I love autumn. It is my favorite season of the year. I love the cooler weather, the colors of the leaves, and the smell of something cozy (which means almost anything with a hint of cinnamon). Since Thanksgiving is just a few weeks away, instead of focusing on preparing a feast I am focusing on a different kind of indulgence. My blog posts for the entire month of November will focus on gratitude.
Gratitude is the attitude of a grateful heart and thank you is its language. “Thank you” communicates value to a person for the way they benefit our lives. For example, last week I joined in with other customers as we thanked a store clerk who provided excellent service. My son said it to me when I made his favorite omelette. And I’m saying it to you for taking the time to read my blog. Thank you!
Showing gratitude affirms others and acknowledges their positive impact. However, when gratitude is due but it goes unstated, it may still send a message — that the person or their contribution holds little value to us.
“Grumbling depletes me but gratitude empowers me. I believe the empowerment comes because God wants us to LIVE a life of THANK YOU.”
The fruit of the Spirit listed in Galatians 5:22-23 is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. But in the spirit of good manners, we might be surprised that gratitude did not make the list. However, gratitude is the proper response to God’s love, joy, peace, patience, and all the other aspects of His heart towards you and me. I believe the power of a grateful heart is that it touches the heart of the Almighty God.
A heart that becomes grateful although reeling from grief. A heart that receives God’s forgiveness and it also forgives. A heart clinging to God’s grace far more than its shame. A heart trusting that God can do anything even when they feel like they have nothing. These are the beats of a mighty heart — one that pulses with faith in Christ more than it contemplates the cares of this world.
I want a heart like that. But far too often the sound of a new problem, a minor annoyance, or my selfish desires disrupts my grateful rhythm. Grumbling depletes me but gratitude empowers me. I believe the empowerment comes because God wants us to LIVE a life of THANK YOU. The “thank you” life is not satisfied with just saying thanks to God and to others; it is a life of living thanks by the way we treat who and what God has given us.
So whether you are looking forward to receiving guests or dreading the thought of how you’ll spend the upcoming holiday season, here’s some good news: our gratitude doesn’t have to be defined by how we feel; it can become fueled by who God is. That may seem like a tough sell when our pain runs deep and our resolve is small. But Psalm 23 reminds us that God’s goodness and mercy follows us all the days of our lives. So even when we’ve not been good or life doesn’t feel good, a greater truth surrounds us.
As you finish reading today’s post, consider the people and circumstances around your life. You may not sense God’s goodness but His word assures us it is there. Take time to let it settle into your heart. Now receive the “thank you” God wants you to live. May the power of that moment bring hope to your heart and joy to your soul.
Next Week: Lessons from the Ungrateful
“May they erupt with praise and give thanks to the Eternal in honor of His loyal love and all the wonders He has performed for humankind! He has quenched their thirst, and He has satisfied their hunger with what is good.” –Psalms 107:8-9
How will living out your “thank you” empower you?
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