Thanksgiving is less that 2 weeks away. I love Thanksgiving. The food will be awesome & in abundance. And yes, i'll probably eat way too much. But this time of year, we tend to show more of a gratitude attitude as we remember all that we are thankful for.
The list of blessings that i have received from God is endless. There is no way to count every one of them, although though the song says, "Count your blessings....." I may have a college education, but i still can't count that high. And even though, we may verbalize what we're thankful for on Thanksgiving, we need to give our gratitude to God every single day.
"Give thanks to Him & praise His name.
For the Lord is good & His love endures forever
His faithfulness continues through all generations."
Psalm 100:4b-5 (NIV)
Do you remember the story of the woman who washed Jesus' feet with her tears, wiped them with her hair & then anointed them with rare perfume? (Luke 7:36-50) She was looking for forgiveness of her sinful life. Responding to her love & repentance, Jesus forgave her sins. The woman realized the extent of her sins & the extent of God's love. In this scripture passage, Jesus teaches that those who are forgiven much tend to love Him more because they are more aware of their sins that have been forgiven. Now that doesn't mean that we need to sin more to be forgiven more. It just means that we need to really see how much we've been forgiven & will probably need to be forgiven in the future. And we need to express our gratitude for that!
Here are some ways for us to cultivate & show your gratitude to God.
***The easiest way is to remember your past before you came to know Christ. Think of what your life was like: what your spirit was like; what you mind & thought process was like; what guilt, habits & sins were part of your life....Now think about how you've changed & been transformed. Go to God in prayer & give Him thanks & praise for all the changes in your life.
*** Write a thank you note to Jesus for all He endured on the cross for you. It doesn't have to be pretty, just write from the heart. When you're done, tuck it away in your Bible, perhaps in Luke 7, next to the woman's story. This will help serve as a reminder to cultivate gratitude for forgiveness.
***Keep a record of your gratitude. Write down 1-3 things that you're thankful for each day. Write them down on a calendar, a notebook, a journal, post it notes....it doesn't really matter what you write them in or on & the things can be anything. As your write them down, just tell God of your gratitude & appreciation.
***For at least one month, read a Psalm a day. They are reminders of God's mercy & that He is the source of everything we have. Go to God in prayer & express your gratitude for anything & everything that comes to mind.
Try one or all of these & see if you don't experience more & more gratitude to our Heavenly Father.
"Give thanks for the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever."
I Chronicles 16:34 (NIV)