Chris Tiegreen wrote, “Thanksgiving is more than a day. It’s a lifestyle.” Paul wrote in Ephesians 5:20, “Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (cp. Colossians 2:7; 4:2). I’m certainly grateful for our Thanksgiving holiday, but not because of the chance to stuff my face with food. I’m most appreciative of this time of year because it’s a good chance for me to focus on gratitude again. Everyone benefits from reminders (cp. 2 Peter 1:13; 3:1).
Whatever you focus on grows larger. That’s true for fears, hopes, dreams, offenses — and blessings. Gratitude focuses so closely on the good that the bad can become almost unnoticeable. David wrote, “I will praise the name of God with a song, and will magnify him with thanksgiving …” (Psalm 69:30-31). David had a lot of successes, but he also dealt with a lot of adversity in his life. From his heart, his psalms of praise exalted God and understated his problems. Furthermore, he wanted all men to praise God (Psalm 107:8).
It is such a blessing that gratitude has the power to shift your perspective. It makes you realize the glass isn’t half-empty. In most cases, it’s actually more than 90 percent full. If you don’t think it is, you might need to focus more on what you’re thankful for, whether it be physical blessings (Acts 28:15) or spiritual blessings (Ephesians 1:3).
I hope everyone has enjoyed their holiday, and that you, like me, have been more interested in being thankful for everything, including the God of heaven who loves you and gives you “every good and perfect gift” (James 1:17).