Giving Thanks

I used to say that my Thanksgiving was perpetual. Ever since I met Jesus and my life did a 180, I gave thanks every single day for His blessings. It was like second nature to feel so grateful for the ways God had redeemed my life. Gratitude was a part of my daily life.  Looking back on that time, I realize that it was pretty easy to have a heart of gratitude because God had blessed my life in so many ways. I was literally swimming in an ocean of blessings every day. Quite honestly, I didn’t have a care in the world. And I certainly didn’t have much in the way of hardship.

These days, I’ve had to work a little harder to maintain my heart of Thanksgiving. It just hasn’t been as easy as it once was. It’s still there, just as strong as ever, but it’s required a little bit of daily elbow grease to get there.

I think that when you begin to experience trials in life, be it health or financial concerns, family or friend issues, problems at work or finding work…you know-the big stuff….it can be easy to forget about all you have to still be grateful for. It’s easy to slip into a mentality of thinking: “If only____, then I would be happy. If we could just get out from under____, then things would be ok. If I could just get past_____, then we’ll be alright.”

But I think that God often uses those things, those trials or difficulties, to make us extra grateful for the things we already have. He doesn’t use difficulties as a way for us to delay our gratitude as we wait for things to “get better.” The most beautiful thing is to be able to still give thanks and still praise Him, even when a storm is raging around you and things are hard.

A dear friend posted a quote the other day that really made me stop in my tracks. I literally stopped what I was doing and just looked at it. It challenged me in a way that I haven’t been challenged in a while. It’s helped me to refocus my energy on being grateful for all that I have, regardless of the things I still wish I had. It’s simple, and yet…it’s so not simple.

I have so many blessings in my life, such richness and beauty surrounds me every day. From my incredible husband to my loving family to my precious little kitty cats and my beautiful home. My heart is full and my hands are raised in awesome adoration and appreciation for all the Lord has blessed me with. 
I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving today! We are heading to my mom’s house with our arms full of crock-pots and pie plates. My future brother in-law’s entire family has flown in to spend the holiday with us, so we are sure to have a full house! Happy Thanksgiving! 🙂

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