A Thanksgiving Devotion
Gratitude. Sometimes it’s the easiest thing in the world to express, and sometimes it’s the last thing you want to think about. For me recently, it has been a lot of the latter.
Honestly, I am in a brand-new season, and it’s tough. I am building my community from the ground up. I am still learning a new job, moved into a new house, and am learning how to be a full-time dog mom! In this season, it has been hard to choose gratitude. But I have realized that I’ve had the wrong perspective. It’s no wonder I haven’t felt gratitude. All I have been doing is looking at the earthly circumstances around me, and I haven’t been rooting my hope in God that I am given each day simply because I have breath in my lungs.
Jesus has been reminding me that He is in even the littlest details of my life. My attention has been drawn to the leaves falling when I take my pup for a walk. Each leaf is different from the one that fell before. If God takes the time to put the colors, wrinkles, and shapes on a leaf that no one may ever notice, think of all the time He spends thinking of you, writing your story, shaping you, and loving you. This thought brings rest and gratitude to my world of chaos.
The Truth about Gratitude
“So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.” – Colossians 2:6-7
If we are first and foremost rooted in Christ, Paul encourages the church to continue our lives in Him which looks like being built up in Him, being strengthened in faith, and OVERFLOWING in gratitude. Gratitude should be a by-product of our relationship with Jesus. It should come naturally and overflow from our faith in Him.
SO. What does this mean for me? Be thankful all the time? Of course not. That’s not reality. God created us as humans and gives us space to be just that.
BUT. If we claim to be walking with Jesus, we should have a heart rooted and overflowing in gratitude. Those we meet should know us by our grateful hearts.
I have a little exercise to help give you a head start…
- First, thank Jesus for something you’ve always taken for granted.
- Second, thank Him for something you have been protected from.
- Third, thank Him for something that you weren’t thankful for in the past.
- Lastly, thank Him for hope of the future that He provides every day.
It’s a little-known fact that you can’t be worried or anxious when you’re thankful. Try it! Even if that’s not true, you’ve still taken time to be thankful in the middle of the chaos. Gratitude isn’t easy. But start small. Thank God for breath in your lungs, even when you have a long day ahead. Thank Him for the food on your table, even if you burned the turkey. Thank Him for the car that takes you to work, even in rush hour traffic. Thank Him for the people around your table, even if you are missing someone who is normally there.
This season might bring chaos, but it also produces beautiful leaves. When you see these leaves, let it be a reminder to thank Jesus for the way He cares for you, loves you, and sees you right where you are.
For Further Reading:
1 Chronicles 16:34
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Written by: Katie White