"You are my God, and I will give you thanks; you are my God, and I will exalt you."
~ Psalm 118:28
I remember a Sunday school lesson years ago where the teacher was trying to teach the class what it means to be grateful. I think I must have been been in second grade. I just remember her saying, "If you are not grateful for small things, then how will you know how to be grateful for when big things happen in your life?"
Being grateful for something is a choice. So often I try to think about the things that I am grateful for when I begin to pray, rather than all the things that I am hopeful for. My life always seems to be better balanced when I begin each day with a spirit of thankfulness, instead of one in need.
Gratitude really is a discipline that involves a conscious choice.
Even when I have been hurt, or feel resentful, I can make the choice to be grateful. Often this is the way that I can keep from complaining, or responding in a way that may lead to the hurt of others. In actuality, the choice to be grateful rarely comes without some real effort. But each time I make it, the next choice is a little easier, a little freer, a little less self-conscious.
Eventually I think that we all discover that acts of gratitude make us grateful because little by little, the choices we make lead us to a place of grace as well.
Stay in God's grip!
G. Todd Williams (c) 2019
Rev. G. Todd Williams lives in the Houston metro area and is a Hospice Chaplain at Essential Hospice, Webster, Texas, and is an ordained Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) pastor.