Praise & Thanks.

Today's Point of Praise: "We give thanks to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you." (Colossians 1:3) Day #7

The theme for today is thanksgiving.  When I originally read this entry in October, I responded by writing down some of the things that I am grateful for - some of the things are simple... superficial even.  Other things are deeper.  All are meaningful to me.  Some are things I often take for granted.  A few things can almost be read as mantras... things I repeat to myself in order to let the reality of them sink in.

I reread the entry again today and it struck me as funny how the things I'm thankful for are more often than not the topic of my conversation - and not always in the most positive light.

I have great people in my support system. vs. "Why does everybody have to live so far away?"
My husband & kids are alive & healthy. vs. "I never have time for myself."
I have a beautiful house. vs. "This house is always such a mess!"
I have a car that runs with no problems. vs. "Why is this car always such a mess?"
I have a family who loves me, despite my imperfections. vs. "Why am I always such a mess..."
I am loved & appreciated. vs. "This one person said one bad thing about me and now I'm just gonna focus on that for the next eight days straight..."
I have money to buy food. vs. "Grocery shopping with kids SUCKS."
My husband provides for us. vs. "You spend more time at work than you do your own house!"

It actually reminds me of the old happies & crappies post I used to take part in every week.  Anyways, the line in the devotional that made me think to reflect on what is truly in my heart at the end of the day versus what I mindlessly complain about was this, "But when we fail to count our blessings, we rob ourselves of the happiness, the peace, and the gratitude that should rightfully be ours."

It's the truth, too.  Think & speak the positive and you end up living more positively.

"The game was to just find something about everything to be glad about -- no matter what it was.  You see, when you're hunting for the glad things, you sort of forget the other kind."  Eleanor H. Porter

"Thanksgiving or complaining -- these words express two contrastive attitudes of the soul of God's children in regard to His dealing with them.  The soul that gives thanks can find comfort in everything; the soul that complains can find comfort in nothing."  Hannah Whitall Smith

When I go dark, I feel like everything is dark.  When we have an exceptionally bad series of events, how quickly do we turn that into having a bad day/week/month/year/etc?  We can't expect to constantly live in the light and there is no sense in beating ourselves up over our lack of gratitude at times... but we do need to hold ourselves responsible for the way we carry ourselves.  The way we approach situations.  The lessons we take away from all things.  And certainly the way we treat ourselves and the rest of the people we love.

Essentially...

Thanksgiving in my heart.
Praise on my lips.





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