A Thankful Lifestyle
A few years ago I was allowing my class to share freely. This is the time they can tell the class a story, a fun place they were able to go or something they really like! A little girl stood up and said…
“Be thankful everyday for everyone you love. You never know when they might go to heaven and you will miss them.”
I mean really how do you hold Back the tears? This little girl had just lost her new baby sister. She taught me such a valuable lesson that day. Be thankful EVERYDAY! It challenged me to create a lifestyle of thanksgiving.
“I will give thanks to you, Lord, with all my heart; I will tell of all your wonderful deeds.” Psalms 9:1
It was soon after this little girls touching reminder that I began asking my class each year what they are most thankful for. Now keep in mind they are 4.
They had so many sweet and innocent responses….
- Mac and cheese.
- Justin Bieber.
- taking a bath.
- eating carrot cake with my mom.
- leaving school early to watch a movie.
- laser tag.
Like the little girl above these kids also had some pretty powerful responses. Responses that moved me and even motivated me to change in many patterns of my own thoughts.
“I am thankful that I have stuff to share.” Aanya age 4
In a world that is always looking to have more it is refreshing to hear a child be thankful that she has not just enough for herself but for others as well
“Remember this Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” 2 Corinthians 9:6-7
I absolutely love how cheerful this girl was with her response. She is so cheerful about giving to others. I don’t know about you, but this really gives me hope for the future! Not only do I feel hopeful for the future but Aanya has reminded me that during this season our thoughts should be focused on how we can give more than we receive.
“I am thankful that when I grow up I’m going to be a football player.” Kyle age 4
He didn’t say…
If I’m good enough…
If they choose me…
If others approve…
If I’m able…
He said “I AM going to be…”
I love his confidence. He has not failed at many things in life yet. He simply knows what he wants and will get there. We as adults need to adopt this same mindset. We need to believe in ourselves, our dreams, and in the others around us.
“I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.” Philippians 4:13
Each of you has a passion for something. There is something that sets your heart on fire. You have dreams! Places you want to go! Ways you want to grow. Goals you wish to obtain. Some of you go after your dreams and never look back. Then there are those of you who are terrified to even try. Why? We don’t try often out of fear that we will fail. This little boy has reminded me to not fear my purpose. Do not be scared to fail when chasing your dream. Like Kyle, know what you want and believe with God you can do it.
“I am thankful that Jesus and God are our leaders.” Kelsey age 4
This touched my heart on so many levels. We often forget that when trouble comes our way, when it seems our world is falling apart, when not a thing is going right and life couldn’t seem to get worse- God is working behind the scenes in our favor. God created this world. God created you! We can’t forget that God has it under control.
“Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” Ephesians 3:20-21
Kelsey has reminded me that God has everything under control in my life. Even in this very moment when everything around me is changing I know that God has purpose and a plan and He will see in through.
A few years ago Mrs. Geni (Children’s Pastor at Grace Outreach Center) encouraged me at rejuvenate to spend the year writing down 1000 things I am thankful for. I did it! It was one of my most joyful years too. I want to extend this challenge to you. It’s easy to go through the year and not allow time to reflect on all the good that is happening around us. What if we spent the year writing down everything we are thankful for, all the good that is happening and all the blessings we are expecting? I truly do believe doing this will be beneficial to our life. Let’s not allow November to be the only month we reflect on all the blessings in life but instead let your lifestyle reflect one of thanksgiving. Be thankful each and everyday. Along with this challenge, this thanksgiving don’t forget to give more than you receive, to believe in the purpose God has given you and to trust that no matter what the day brings God has got you in the palm of his hand.
What is something big God has done this year in your life that you are thankful for?