Monday, November 28, 2011

Sunday, November 27, 2011

What Does Grateful Look Like?

Zig Ziglar says the healthiest of all human emotions is gratitude.

All this talk about gratitude and thanksgiving....but what does it really mean? What does that look like? When December 1 rolls around will my life be any different because of gratitude?

How do I live a life of gratitude?

Here are a few ideas...many you have heard before. Pick one. Change your life.

Start a gratitude journal. Write down one thing every day you are thankful for. Or, like One Thousand Gifts, make it your goal to write 1,000 things you are grateful for.

Write thank you notes. If you are like me, you think them often...but writing them and mailing them forces you to be intentional about living a life of gratitude.

Meditate on gratitude. That is, scripture. Give thanks. To God. In all things. For all things.

Pray. Often. With the mindset of thanksgiving. Daniel got down on his knees three times a day and prayed with thanksgiving. Even though doing so would put him in the den of lions, he prayed three times a day with thankfulness...because he knew the only way to enter into His courts was with thanksgiving.

Make sure when you are 'being grateful' you know WHO it is you are grateful to. Don't just be grateful. Be grateful TO God.

Being grateful means not saying what you want to say sometimes and instead choosing to say something else. Or not saying anything at all.

Being grateful means not just seeing the cup as half full rather than half empty, it means seeing the cup as overflowing.

We make the choice. Every day. We can choose gratitude. Or we can choose to complain. I often make the wrong choice. But by the grace of God and because ANYTHING is possible for him who believes, I can make a different choice tomorrow.

It's NOT about determining to be more thankful. It's about asking God, through the power of His Holy Spirit, to help me choose gratitude upon wakening every day. It's not about resolving to be a more grateful person. It's about cultivating a lifestyle of gratitude every a million small asking God to transform and renew my mind to be more like Christ.

That is what gratitude looks like.


from the Jesus Calling devotional book... The devotion was about being thankful. "When you come to Me with a thankful heart, it opens up windows of heaven. Spiritual blessing fall freely through those widows and down into your life. A thankful heart opens you up to these blessing, and then you have even more reasons to be grateful."

Habakkuk 3:17-18
"Though the fig tree should now blossom, nor fruit be on the vines,
the produce of the olive fail
and the fields yield no food,
the flock be cut off from the fold
and there be no herd in the stalls,
yet I will rejoice in the Lord;
I will take joy in the God of my salvation.
God, the Lord, is my strength;
he makes my feet like the deer's;
he makes me tread on my high places."

Friday, November 11, 2011

This Vapor We Call Life

Routine. Repetitive. Unremarkable. Unmemorable. Ordinary.

What words would you tend to use when describing the day you are about to begin? Do these words describe most of your days?

I woke up early this morning and it started like any other day. I am generally very happy with my life, my family, my career, and most other aspects of my existence. However, I recognized this morning that I have again slipped into a state of mind that does not produce good fruit in my life. I have begun to live my life as though I am in control, and as though I will never die.

Life is slipping by so quickly. The Bible describes this life as “a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away.” (James 4:14) (NASB) THIS LIFE IS SHORT, WHAT AM I DOING TAKING ANYTHING FOR GRANTED?!?

Everyday of life that God gives to us is a grand gift. A TEMPORARY gift that must not be taken for granted.

Every time I get to embrace my husband, kiss my children, eat a meal with my family, wake up in a warm home, feel the crisp clean fall air, spend time with my daughters, and enjoy every other blessing in this life, I should give thanks. But you know what? Every time I change a load of laundry, load the dishwasher, clean the toilets, and fold the laundry, I should thank God for the gift of nice clothes, food to feed my family, plumbing for a comfortable life, and a home.

Why don’t I think this way? Nearly everything in this life is a blessing if we choose to recognize that although we have done nothing to deserve any of it, God has chosen to bless us with life.

I jumped over to my favorite Bible reference site after praying about this topic, and in the sovereignty of God, this set of videos were on their blog. A couple years ago, Zack didn’t know cancer was about to rock his world. His wife didn’t know she might soon be a single mom.

We have friends who have gone though something similar, and yet I still allow some of my days to be ordinary and without purpose? I really want to strive today to make the most of every moment. I still have to work today, but I am going to work with a thankful heart and a smile on my face. There are many routine tasks to complete, but I will strive to complete those tasks with joy. I don’t know whether God will graciously give another day to enjoy them.

Thursday, November 10, 2011


Oh, My God, He will not delay
My refuge and strength, always
I will not fear, His promise is true
My God will come through always

If I believe that my God will come through, there any reason to be anxious? No way.
I can't focus time on my fears or failures, because there's work to do.

Halloween Light Show

This is the way my girls would want our house for Halloween!!