and be thankful.

Ms. Nancy Leigh DeMoss defines gratitude as

“learning to recognize and express appreciation for the benefits we have received from God and from others”. 

Let’s break this down a little bit more to fully understand that choosing gratitude is a choice; it takes effort, intent, and thought.  To “recognize” what we receive, our eyes must be open and our hearts alert.  I am often too busy running through my list of to-do for the entire day that by the time I get dressed in the morning I am already thinking and planning “what am I going to make for dinner”.  Breathe. And be thankful.

“Expressing appreciation” is to EXPRESS to God and others our thanks.

Taking the time to meditate on the “benefits we have received” overwhelms me with the generosity of God and people.  My wants dwindle as I recognize how my needs are met.  Discontentment disappears.  And I am thankful.

Before you really start your day, before worry and anxiety beckons your attention, I want to challenge you to be still and express thanks.  Focus on the goodness of God, rather than the problems of the day. Your list may look something like this…

  1. Oatmeal
  2. Rest
  3. Mornings, new days
  4. Journaling
  5. Co-worker bringing me Ben and Jerry’s and Pizza while I had (still do) laryngitis and bronchitis
  6. God’s faithfulness
  7. His timing
  8. Clean Linen Scented candle
  9. Leftovers
  10. Hat day at Work

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