The Problem with our Thankfulness

The Problem with our Thankfulness

It is a virtue we’re taught as soon as we can utter words. We say to whether we mean it or not because it is the right thing to do. We go through the motions for fear of being rude or weird or ungracious. The problem is that many of us are not genuinely thankful; we secretly (or openly) live in a state of ingratitude. Well how do we make it real?

Train your Heart

Thankfulness is not instinctive. We are by nature selfish beings. And if we don’t train our hearts to be grateful, we will live in a state of perpetual need—or should I say, never ending want. Most times our unthankful attitudes stem from unmet expectations—we didn’t get what we wanted or deserved or needed. But thankfulness is not be contingent upon receiving something we expect or desire; thankfulness has little to do with the gift but everything to do with the giver. We must train our hearts to appreciate that it has been given to us and not what has been given. At the root it is about love—the love we have for another. It is our ability to recognize and lift up people and not the weight of what they have given us.

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Focus on the Present

Thankfulness forces us to stop and center on the present. Suddenly we must see and appreciate what it is that we possess—not on what we would like to have, not on what we have lost. Even if our thankfulness is on past events or possessions, the present is always our point of reference. Living in the moment allows us to see and take in all of life’s goodness-as little or as plentiful as it may be.

Remember that thankfulness causes us to look into the face of God

Gratefulness opens and expands our capacity to see and receive God’s goodness. All good things come from Him and when we are thankful we are forever reminded of Him. To look upon God is to look into the face of love. And in doing so our hearts are primed to receive all good things. Thankfulness keeps us loving, hopeful and happy.

 

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