Attitude of gratitude
This was the lesson I taught the high school girls at church several weeks ago.
Abounding in thankfulness.
This was the phrase from tonight that caught me the second time I read the passage (I’ll tell you the first later on).
When you speak in genuine thankfulness and gratitude, your whole demeanor changes. Any negative feeling or thought pattern is dissolved. Stress is removed. The tension is released. Yet sometimes all we want to do, is complain. Nothing is ever good enough – it’s too hot, too cold, too muggy, too bright, too loud, too soft, too difficult, too easy, too long, too short, too expensive, too cheap, too this, too that. I mean I could keep going but honestly I was making myself ill.
I don’t want to be the negative Nancy that brings everyone down. There is too much good in the world and too much good sent by God to be focused on this stuff that doesn’t fit in with our current mood or standard.
That is what brings me to the phrase that I grabbed the first time – “cancelling the record of our debt…He disarmed the rulers and authorities”
I have a lot of school bills – talk about financial baggage – and if someone broke that off of me in an instant I would probably jump, scream, laugh, cry, be in utter disbelief, and then repeat a couple times. I would be in shock and overjoyed at that because it is such a burden. One I cannot pay off. Technically I will eventually, but since this is a metaphor for our spiritual debt, go with me on this. I can’t pay. I don’t deserve for someone to spend that on me. Yet, it is their choice just as it was Jesus’ choice to die for us.
To cancel our debts! To disarm the rulers and authorities! To put those who shamed us to shame! To triumph over them FOR US!
That is why we should be always in an attitude of gratitude, abounding in thankfulness!
“Thank you Jesus” for everything . On the road, you almost get into an accident – Thank you Jesus I didn’t die (instead of what is the matter with you driver?!) At work, you have a bad day – Thank you Jesus I have this job to pay my bills (instead of I hate this job). At home, you get into an argument with whomever – Thank you Jesus for them and that you have given us the abi!ugh to forgive and ask for forgiveness (instead of I hate them why can’t they do it my way?) Walking outside with the sunset or sunrise – Thank you Jesus for the beautiful scene.
It is the little foxes that ruin the garden so the reverse must be true – a garden of thankfulness is built by the little foxes of gratitude running through your day, not ruining but instead leading you closer to Jesus!