We have so much to be thankful for in our life. Yet, sometimes it is easy to lose sight of things to appreciate, as we are drawn away by the many distractions and opportunities for complaining that life throws our way. What if I am at a rough place? Is it possible to find something to be grateful for when you feel like life is spinning out of control?
Gratitude doesn’t just happen. Often, our flesh fights a heart of gratitude and instead leans towards complaining – a much easier reaction. And complaining can reap its own rewards in making fast friends. Have you ever noticed that when you complain in front of others, it is an open invitation to hear their complaints? In the midst of whatever situation we find ourselves in, we must ask ourselves, do we want to be known as a complainer, or one who is full of gratitude?
How can we truly live a life out of gratitude? What if those around you saw you as a grateful person?
Sometimes, the best place to start is assessing where we personally are with gratitude. Recognizing your season in a brutally honest manner can truly bring you to a place of not only feeling validated, but can also bring you to a place of peace. The fact is, we are not called to perfection, but instead encouraged to “give thanks in all circumstances, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” (I Thessalonians 5:18)
Giving thanks sets the atmosphere of my heart – especially when I don’t “feel like it.” Life can be very beautiful AND very difficult. At times, we are tired and sometimes feel stuck. Is it possible to be grateful when everything seems to be upside down? Yes, I believe it is!
One of my clients was in the middle of fighting breast cancer when I was coaching her. At the end of meeting for a few months, she boldly proclaimed that cancer was the best thing that happened to her.
As she walked through suffering, the Lord transformed her. Fear was replaced with courage. Lies were replaced with truth. She was thankful for a disease that brought change and freedom. She taught me what gratitude looked like, as she bravely conquered cancer! The best part? Her gratitude has not only brought her much joy, but multiplied and impacted her family and friends.
Here are a few reasons why gratitude can impact your daily life:
- Gratitude kicks out anxiety, stress and depression. If you are feeling stressed, overwhelmed and hearing the knock from anxiety, engaging gratitude is a way to disrupt and relinquish those feelings. Anxiety and gratitude cannot cohabitate in the same mental space.
- Gratitude takes our thoughts off of ourselves and situations and looks for thankfulness in our lives.
- Gratitude brings us to a place of surrender, which leads us to dependency on God, not ourselves. Psalms 25:9 says, “He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way.”
- Gratitude combats comparison and encourages you to appreciate.
- Gratitude gives you P E A C E in your heart and it is extended to those around you.
Let’s encourage each other to walk in gratitude in all we say and do. It will make a difference! YOU will make a difference!