An Attitude of Gratitude

(Note: Since there won’t be an FYI next week, I’m adapting a post from 2012 in honor of Thanksgiving.)

“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.” (1 Chronicles 16:34 NIV)

As I sit here looking out onto the beach, on vacation for my tenth anniversary while my in-laws watch my two boys, I am reminded of how much I have to be grateful for—and how much more I could express that to God.

The idea of giving thanks has come to my attention several times lately. A friend of mine told our Bible study about A Simple Act of Gratitude, which chronicles author John Kralik’s adventure of writing one thank-you note every day for a year and the profound, positive impact it had on his life. Another of my friends is affiliated with the online greeting card company Send Out Cards. The company created the 30 Days of Gratitude Challenge, which asks customers to send out one thank-you note daily for a month. (Sure, the company might not be wholly selfless in issuing this challenge, but when’s the last time any marketing material asked you to do something nice for others?)

“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good” is a refrain that appears in many psalms, as well as a song recorded in 1 Chronicles. We know a God who is good, who is for us, whose love never fails. It’s impossible to be too frequently reminded of that. Just as people love receiving notes of gratitude, God loves it when we thank him for his gifts—and thanking him is great for us, too. It lifts our gaze out of our own lives and toward his glory. When we’re feeling down, giving thanks reminds us of how much we have to live for and the hope we have in Christ. When we’re feeling good, giving thanks reminds us that our blessings are not our own achievements, but gifts from a loving Father.

It’s so easy to overlook saying thank you, and yet saying it can have such impact — both on you and on the recipient of your gratitude. Remembering to express your thanks takes effort, but it’s worth it. Though the saying may be hokey, the sentiment is spot on: let’s all try to cultivate an attitude of gratitude.

Abigail’s email address is in the directory.

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