I'm over at Club31Women this month talking about cultivating a thankful life that goes beyond our Thanksgiving Day celebrations.
Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
1 Thess. 5:18
The Thanksgiving holiday is approaching and I am sure many of us are already making lists, sketching out our menus, and creating a plan of attack for all of the cleaning we need to do. Those who are crafty put together Thanksgiving trees and other fun crafts, while others of us scour Pinterest to see what kind of Thanksgiving table decor we can copy and some simply keep a thanksgiving journal. For the Thorns, Thanksgiving also means family reunion.
But wouldn’t it be great if we put this much effort into cultivation a life of thanksgiving that goes beyond just the month of November? J.R. Miller said that,
“Christian thanksgiving is the life of Christ in the heart, transforming the disposition and the whole character.”
A thankful life will change who we are, and how we think about what we have, and all that we experience. The more we cultivate a thankful heart the more our heart will begin to beat like the heart of Jesus. There will be less complaining, less coveting, less selfish attitudes, less haughtiness. There will be more joy, more sharing, more contentment and more internal peace.
But thankfulness is born of theology. It is the offspring of truth. The more doctrine we know the more thankful we are equipped to become. Here are a few truths to meditate on as you seek to cultivate a thankful heart.
1. Thank God for His preservation
Every evening we should ask ourselves, what has God preserved me from today? Is it illness, accidents, evil, starvation, crimes, ruin, homelessness, despair, or death? These are common in the world and yet God has kept us from many of these things today.
And during the times when God allows us to walk through the “valley of the shadow of death” (or hardship) we can know that God still has his hand of protection on his children and is preserving our hearts and our souls. Remember how Job lost everything? Even during that time Job praised God saying,
“The Lord has taken away — blessed be the name of the Lord (Job 1:21)