Written By: Patti Miller
Gratitude – grat·i·tude –
: the quality of being thankful : readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.
Gratitude is seeing and celebrating the good in the world around us. This can be easier said than done. Seeing the good around us takes practice. We don’t need to look for big things to be grateful for; we can start with the little things. Start with basic things- family, friends, a home, a vehicle, etc. We have so many things to be grateful for. The definition above reads readiness to show appreciation. Part of gratitude is showing appreciation. We teach our children from a young age to say, “Thank you.” We should never outgrow those words. When someone does something for us, we’re never too old to say, “Thank you.” Never too old to appreciate the good in the world around us, never too old to “return the kindness.” When we are truly grateful, we want to return what has been given to or done for us with kindness.
Gratitude is easier when life is going well- when life is running smoothly. But the time we need to practice gratefulness the most is when life is not going smoothly and times are hard. When we are struggling, we need to stop and search for all the many things we have to be grateful for. Try keeping a gratitude journal. Read it when times are hard and reflect on how much you have to be thankful for.
We should be grateful for the people we have in our lives. When someone comes to mind, stop, and thank God for them. When you’re upset with someone, stop and thank God for them. When someone has hurt your feelings, stop, and thank God for them.
“I thank my God every time I remember you.” (Philippians 1:3)
“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” (Colossians 3:17)
“Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.” (Colossians 3:16)