When you think of giving thanks, do you imagine a Thursday in November with family, gathered around an overflowing table? Or perhaps you envision endless football on TV, the making of Christmas lists, and plans for marathon shopping sprees. But shouldn’t Thanksgiving be more than one day a year?
Among the definitions of “thankful” are conscious of benefit received; well pleased, glad; joyous; satisfied. What if, instead of consigning thanksgiving to one day, we cultivated a year-round attitude of gratitude, a heartfelt perception rather than a day on the calendar. How would all-year thankfulness manifest in our lives?
What if, instead of consigning thanksgiving to one day, we cultivated a year-round attitude of gratitude.
When I look back, I am overwhelmed with thankfulness for my family, church, friendships, and health. Remembering special family times, faith heritage, and abundant blessings remind me of God’s great goodness, faithfulness, and love.
Perhaps, when you look back, your memories are clouded by abuse, abandonment, and fear. It’s nearly impossible to remember with thanksgiving under those circumstances, but maybe you can remember beacons of light that shone through the darkness and gave you hope. Give thanks for the hope that pulled you through.
Some people face the future with uncertainty, fear, and a deep dread that halts forward motion. In the current climate of our world, those emotions are understandable, but you can face what lies ahead with joy, expectancy, and thankfulness, knowing Eternal God holds all events, all nations, all rulers, all circumstances in his hand.
Year-round thankfulness is contingent on seeing blessings. Maybe you need positive perception enhancement, a reset of your thankfulness barometer that allows you to notice positives instead of focusing on negatives. The more you zero in on negatives the less likely you are to see positives. Eventually, negativity takes over your mind and crowds out your ability to recognize blessings., so count all the positives in your life. Name them, list them, and then give thanks.
Is expressing thanks something you do genuinely, spontaneously, and frequently? Our culture gravitates toward criticism and espousing negatives. I’m sometimes surprised when I’m in a public place and thanks isn’t expressed, although, to me, it seems a natural response for the act or occasion.
Speaking thanks is important, not only expressing thanks to each other, but to God. Expressions of thanks thaw icy resentment, warm hearts, and are a fitting and welcomed response for kindnesses great and small. Will you commit to refocusing on blessings and year-round thankfulness?
“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever” (Psalm 136:1 NLT).
Expressions of thanks thaw icy resentment, warm hearts, and are a fitting and welcomed response for kindnesses great and small.
Candy Arrington is a writer, blogger, speaker, and freelance editor. She often writes on tough topics with a focus on moving through, and beyond, difficult life circumstances. Candy has written hundreds of articles, stories, and devotionals published by numerous outlets including: Inspiration.org, Arisedaily.com, CBN.com, Healthgrades.com, Care.com, Focus on the Family, NextAvenue.org, CountryLiving.com, and Writer’s Digest. Candy’s books include Life on Pause: Learning to Wait Well (Bold Vision Books), When Your Aging Parent Needs Care (Harvest House), and AFTERSHOCK: Help, Hope, and Healing in the Wake of Suicide (B&H Publishing Group).
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