"Thinking this morning about how gratitude should be my FIRST RESPONSE to
situations. My thoughts should not default to the negative and THEN find
something to be thankful for in it. Retraining our minds to be thankful in all
things is an intentional and repetative act."- Lisa Bruno*
This is a facebook status that I read earlier this week that REALLY resounded with me. I've been thinking alot about the fact that thankfulness isn't normally my first response. My first response is to worry and stress, and then I have to remind myself to be thankful and greatful. So, I'm on a mission to retrain my mind towards thankfulness.
So, now I'm wondering exactly how to do this. As much as I would like to think there is a magic switch to flip that would suddenly make me a more thankful person, I've learned the lesson that normally there aren't short cuts. It's work. Just like my training for my 5k, we have to constantly MAKE ourselves think thankful thoughts. Just like Lisa said, It's "intentional and repetative". In Phillippians 4:8 it says...
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble,
whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is
admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy —think about such
It doesn't say "Ask God and he will make you think about such things" or "Pray this specific prayer and you will automatically think such things". It says "Think such things". Action words if I've ever heard them. Ok, so I need to be purposeful about being thankful. I need to seek out things to be thankful for and thankful about.
Ok, so also, in Colossians 2:6-7 it says....
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.
To me, this means that thankfulness isn't an island unto itself. You can't have thankfulness that is overflowing and a heart that harbors sin. You can't have abounding thankfulness and a shallow relationship with God. It means my relationship with God needs to be "rooted and built up in Him" and "strengthened in faith" as well.
So, I need to train my mind towards thankfulness by focusing my mind on thankful thoughts and keep leading myself in that direction. I also need to continue to seek God and work towards a deeper relationship with Him. And I also need to find strength in the faith I've been given. Sounds simple, right? Like I said, there's no short cuts, and God never promised becoming more like Him would easy, He just asked us to trust Him that He knows best. And since He knows best and He commanded me to be more like Him, that's what I'm going to strive to do.