Choose Gratitude

Southeast Christian Church
3 0

If you do some research on gratitude, the data is really striking and remarkable. People who write in a gratitude journal actually sleep better and longer. When soldiers come home for war, those who practice gratitude have fewer instances of PTSD. People who are grateful are happier, get better grades, have better friendships, have more energy, and have fewer illnesses and less pain than others. Basically, it seems gratitude is the answer to life.

But it doesn’t simply come down to if you're grateful person or you're not. The question is, do you practice being grateful? If so, all those things we just mentioned are available to you! Paul wrote in 1 Thessalonians 5:18, “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

Do you ever find yourself asking what’s God's will for me? It's this: Be thankful in all circumstances. Another way to say it is to choose gratitude or to count your blessings. Take some time to look back over the past year and see how God has provided, the people he's placed in your life, and the new experiences you've had. Yes, we need to grieve our losses, but we can learn so much through the trials. Searching for the positives, even if it's little things, will remind you that God is still with you in the midst of tragedy. Gratitude is a choice. God's will is for you to be thankful in all circumstances.

Reflection/Discussion Question: What is a way that you can incorporate choosing gratitude in your life more regularly?

Community tags

This content has 0 tags that match your profile.

Comments

To leave a comment, login or sign up.

Related Content

0
Symptoms of Discouragement
In order to give courage, we first need to be able to recognize discouragement. Someone who is discouraged is someone who may be frustrated, easily irritated, annoyed, or negative. They might be set off by situations that seem trivial or insignificant, but discouragement infects all areas of our lives. Instead of reacting in grace, love, and encouragement to the discouraged, we often fire back negativity, insults, hard truth, and anger. It can be difficult to have compassion for a discouraged friend who is expressing it through frustration, but if we can diagnose it quickly, we may be able to offer a cure instead of more pain. Another symptom of discouragement is fatigue. Discouraged people are physically and emotionally exhausted. They may not be emotionally available. They may feel like the only thing they can give their energy to after a long day is to sit on the couch and stare at a screen. In this situation we often exacerbate the problem by offering “healthy living” suggestions such as working out, eating healthy, and making less lazy decisions. We misdiagnose discouragement and try to provide a worldly cure that further fuels the discouragement. In order to offer the cure that discouraged people need, we must to rely on God. If we rely on our own strength, we will retaliate with what we are receiving or fall into the trap of discouragement ourselves. In order to offer courage to those in need, we must rely on the source of courage. God offers courage that will never run out. He is the source of grace and selfless love that we need to bring to the discouraged. Reflection/Discussion Question: After reading the symptoms of discouragement, how have you treated people in your life who are discouraged?
0
Intimacy Deepens With Verbal Communication
Sexual, emotional, and spiritual intimacy are all woven together; they are inseparable so that one intimacy cannot grow without fostering the growth of the other two. If you just focus on sexual intimacy and ignore what it takes to grow emotional and spiritual intimacy, sexual intimacy will be stunted. And one of the most important ways to grow emotional intimacy is through words.  In Song of Solomon chapter 4, before Solomon even touches his new bride, he moves his way down her body, speaking of how beautiful she is. He doesn’t do this out of obligation to get to the “good part” that he wants. He is compelled by his love and cannot stay silent. We are people of purposeful words because we are created in the image of God and enjoy his indwelling Spirit. Not only did God’s words create the world, he continues his work by the power of his word. Isaiah 55:10-11 says, “As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it” (NIV). If we are filled with this same Spirit, then we hold the power to speak words that bring flourishing and creation. We can be people whose words are never spoken in vain.  In our marriages, we should speak words of life that bring flourishing and intimacy. Whether we are speaking about our spouse’s looks, giving an encouraging word, offering appreciation, or expressing pure joy, all that we speak has the power to grow the intimacy we were created to experience in marriage.  Reflection/Discussion Question: How are you doing with growing intimacy in your marriage or your other relationships with your words?