Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness; come before Him with joyful songs. Know that the Lord is God. It is He who made us, and we are His; we are His people, the sheep of His pasture. Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name. For the Lord is good and His love endures forever; His faithfulness continues through all generations. – Psalm 100
David tells us to acknowledge that the Lord is God! How can we do that. We acknowledge Him when we shout our praises, appreciate His status as our Creator, accept His authority in every detail of life, enthusiastically agree with the guidance He gives us, and express our thanks for His unfailing love.
God is our Creator; we did not create ourselves. Many people live as though they are the creator and center of their own little world. But when we realize that God created us and gives us all we have, we will want to give to others as God gave to us. Then if all is lost, we still have God and all He gives us.
It is good to give thanks and praise to the Lord:
- Because of who He is and what He has done
- Because He rightly deserves it.
- At all times.
- For His lovingkindness and faithfulness.
- Musically, with instruments and voice.
- His great works have made us glad.
THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING THANKFUL
Luke has given us a story from the life of Jesus that helps me reflect on the importance of being thankful for God’s goodness to me. And this story can help us to grow in our own understanding of this important issue. With the story of the ten lepers, Luke emphasizes the rarity of a thankful spirit. Luke is the only writer who tells this story. It may be that Luke actually met the thankful leper years later and heard the story from this man’s very lips.
Notice Jesus’ final words: “One of them, when he saw that he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. And Jesus asked, ‘Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Was no one found to return and give God praise?'” Only one had taken the time to thank the person who had made his recovery possible.
GRATITUTDE IS AN ATTITUDE
An attitude of gratitude means making it a habit to express thankfulness and appreciation in all parts of your life, on a regular basis, for both the big and small things alike. As Howes puts it, “If you concentrate on what you have, you’ll always have more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you’ll never have enough.”
GRATITUDE IS AN ISSUE OF THE MIND.
- Grateful people are satisfied and content with life. In Philippians 4:11-12 – “I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.”. Paul had learned contentment. He knew how to abound and how to be abased. He could go either way with the strength God provided him.
- People with no attitude of gratitude do not know contentment. They are never satisfied with life. They are always looking for the next best thing.
- Grateful people are not stressed out. They don’t look at people who have more than they do and get stressed out about it. They don’t think that life is unfair.
Let us therefore, rejoice in the miracle of Christmas as our hearts are filled with the gift of God’s love manifested in Christ Jesus and give thanks to Him for the joy, hope, love and peace we receive all year round.
Merry Christmas and a Blessed, Fulfilling, Prosperous Year 2021!!
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