It is easy give thanks. They are words we say, lists our lips speak around the Thanksgiving Table.
Family. Home. Health. Friendships. Faith. Travel. Opportunities. Blessings.
Giving Thanks With A Grateful Heart, however, seems just a touch more difficult.
To GIVE THANKS is to speak.
To BE GRATEFUL is an act of the heart.
It means that we mean our thanks, deeply, truly. With all of our soul. Maybe that is easy? The list above is beautiful, sweet, full, joyous. We can deeply feel the thanks. But God asks us to give thanks in all circumstances:
Whatever happens, give thanks, because it is God’s will in Christ Jesus that you do this. ~ 1 Thessalonians 5:18
So what about the list that comes from that?
Sickness. Death. Pain. Broken Dreams. Loss. Sadness. Loneliness. Unwanted Change.
We are asked to give thanks when things go well, and not so well in life.
We can, possibly, maybe on our best day, do that.
But with a Grateful Heart also?
I ran into an old friend at Costco the other day. We used to teach together and hadn’t seen each other for about fifteen years. She reminded me as we caught up that her son, a junior in high school at the time, died in a car crash shortly after I left the school where we taught. As she recalled that night she said, “The moment I found out my son had died, I cried out to God, ‘God, thank you for all the years that you gave him to me.”
These were not just words. My friend had a grateful heart. She meant her thanks. She deeply meant it because all those moments of his life now were infinitely more precious to her since he was gone.
I think Giving Thanks With A Grateful Heart means we MEAN our thanks….from the bottom of our soul. In life’s highest highs and lowest lows. We are deeply, deeply thankful for it all because we believe that God is Good In All Circumstances, and that he will bring healing and blessings out of our trials.
Pain has nuggets of peace within….Gratefulness is the pan that sifts peace to the top.
May we Give Thanks With A Grateful heart today! We have so so much to be thankful for.