Well it's time, time for us to prepare for the meal of the year; Thanksgiving dinner. Most of you will probably spend a little time reflecting on what you have to be thankful for this year and eat your meal and move on. This season when we reflect on what we are thankful for, I want to challenge you to adjust your perspective. It is easy to live day to day focused on our wants and our hurts, but when we adjust our perspective we can live day to day thankful for our blessings and our joy. Here are some ways to adjust from a season of thankfulness to a lifetime of thankfulness:
LIVE IN RESPONSE TO THE GOSPEL
I just spent the last month reading through the gospel of Luke with a friend and was daily reminded of the life that Jesus lived and the good news he came to share with us. I promise, reading the gospels will never get old. If every day we have a chance to see the person of Jesus for who He was, what He said and how He loved those around Him, we can’t help but respond to the Gospel. As Christ followers if we are responding to the Gospel every day and our hearts are in constant response to Jesus, thankfulness will come.
REFLECT ON GOD’S WORK IN YOUR LIFE
A couple years back I started keeping a prayer journal for our group of high school guys that got together each week. We would pass the notebook around each week and put in our prayer requests. When a prayer was answered, we would highlight it in the book. Doing this gave us a very tangible way to see God’s work in our lives. Sometimes we are so bogged down by our wants, that we miss the answers to prayers we have prayed, we miss the blessings given.
When I see God clearly move in a situation, my faith is strengthened for the next round. Sometimes God is moving mountains in our lives but we just aren’t looking. Remind yourself often of the tangible ways that God is working in your life, thankfulness with come.
MAKE MORE OF JESUS, AND LESS OF YOURSELF
We aren’t perfect, Jesus is, so the more we can point our blessings to Him, the less we will artificially credit our own doing. A very dangerous trap to fall into is to think we can operate apart from Christ & the Holy Spirit while claiming to be a Christ-follower. It’s as foolish as thinking that a branch broken off of an apple tree will still be healthy and produce apples. Jesus Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit within us is our only hope, we should humbly direct all of our victories to them. So if we make more of Jesus in our lives giving him all the glory and clearly understand our role in the family of God, we will be abundantly thankful for Him.
Imagine the difference living a life of thankfulness would have. I encourage you to enter this season of thankfulness with a fresh perspective that would lead to a life of thankfulness.
Blessings, Chris Cummings