One of the most important qualities we can develop is thankfulness. Many times we dwell so much on the adverse circumstances in our lives that we fail to be thankful for the good things. Several years ago, I fractured my shoulder. For the fracture to heal, I had to immobilize my right arm and put it in a sling for several weeks. I am left-handed so that helped some. However, I did not realize how many tasks take two arms and hands.
I could not button my clothes or tie my shoes. It was almost impossible to comb my hair. I could not hold a mirror to look at the back of my hair and comb it at the same time. At that time, I thought of people who only had one arm and realized how grateful I should be for two. I have made a point to thank God continually for the things I had taken for granted.
I encourage you to always thank and praise God for bringing you through every circumstance and situation that comes your way.
We often concentrate on the negative traits of our spouse or children. I encourage you to concentrate on the positives. Tell your family how much you appreciate them. Make saying thanks a regular part of your daily routine. Thankfulness is normally associated with getting something and showing your appreciation for it. Certainly, we should say thank you. However, thankfulness should become a lifestyle.
Every morning when I awaken, my first thought is “This is the day the Lord has made. I will rejoice and be glad in it” (Ps. 118:24 NLT). My first words are thanking the Lord for the day and thanking Him for wisdom to accomplish my tasks for that day. Often we ask God for something. He accommodates us, but we neglect to thank Him for answering our requests. When we encounter difficult circumstances, we complain instead of thanking God for delivering us from the situation. I’m reminded of the story of Daniel.
Daniel 6:1–5: “It pleased Darius to set over the kingdom an hundred and twenty princes, which should be over the whole kingdom; And over these three presidents; of whom Daniel was first: that the princes might give accounts unto them, and the king should have no damage. Then this Daniel was preferred above the presidents and princes, because an excellent spirit was in him; and the king thought to set him over the whole realm. Then the presidents and princes sought to find occasion against Daniel concerning the kingdom; but they could find none occasion nor fault; forasmuch as he was faithful, neither was there any error or fault found in him. Then said these men, We shall not find any occasion against this Daniel, except we find it against him concerning the law of his God.”
The men were jealous of Daniel and coerced the king into signing a decree that anyone who prayed to another God or man except the king for 30 days would be cast into a lions’ den.
Daniel 6:10 says, “Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime.”
Although Daniel knew of the decree, he continued praying and giving thanks to his God. Of course, we know the end of that story. God shut the mouths of the lions, and Daniel was saved from destruction.
David continually prayed a prayer of thanksgiving. Psalm 9:1–2 (NKJV) says, “I will praise You, O Lord, with my whole heart; I will tell of all Your marvelous works. I will be glad and rejoice in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High.”
The Apostle Paul always praised God in the midst of difficult circumstances. He was in prison when he wrote to the Philippian church: “Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice. Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
I encourage you to always thank and praise God for bringing you through every circumstance and situation that comes your way. And confess as the Apostle Paul stated in Second Corinthians 2:14, “Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ.”
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