January 6, 2017

We are bombarded with messages and promises for a quick fix to a happier life. And what so many people are discovering is that what we need is already inside each of us. I don’t know where things stand in your life at the beginning of 2017, but I do know that  with each new day we are gifted, God gives everyone a chance to make it our best day and even our best year, yet. It’s all about the disciplines that you and I develop in our lives and this year we are going to look at developing a discipline of being grateful. Today, I have just 3 things for us to think about.

First, I’ve done a lot of research on gratitude and I can tell you there is a flood of information to support the simple, effective, idea that if you want to feel better about your life and instantly  improve your mood, keep a gratitude journal! Now, who doesn’t want to feel better and be in a better mood? Every night before you go to bed, write down five things you’re grateful for.  Write them down.  And if you do it over a period of time, it will begin to change the way you see things. When you feel better, you are more likely to be a blessing to others.

Second, if you are ready and anticipating change in any area of your life, big or small, you must be open to doing things in a new and different way! If you are waiting to hear from God to know what to do next, consider looking at your life through the lens of gratitude. When we view life through the lens of gratitude, it makes all of the opportunities God has in store for us, so much clearer and easier to recognize.

And finally the third thing. It is through constant gratitude written down and expressed, that your eyes become open. Constant gratitude.  It’s not all at once.  In the book of Thessalonians in the Bible, Paul writes to the people who have just started a new church. The church was really experiencing growing pains and they were feeling overwhelmed. Paul said do not grow weary in doing well.

It’s about keeping on, do not grow weary in doing well.  It’s not about what happens in a week, or two, it’s what happens in months.  By being disciplined, writing in a gratitude journal, writing thank-you notes, looking in new ways, it’s what happens over months that changes your life.  Do not grow weary in doing well Paul would remind us.