G is for Gratefulness


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This post is brought to you by the Letter G

Gratefulness.

It’s something I’ve been thinking a lot about lately.

My life is in an uncomfortable place financially. I get discouraged that at my age, I’m still struggling.

treewind

Of course, this is because of choices we’ve made: to minister in the rural United States. We have no retirement because of this choice. We have no savings. No insurance. And it’s easy sometimes for me to feel afraid and scared if I think too much about the future and “what ifs.”

If I’m not careful, I can get into a mode of whining instead of praising.

nowhining

I can get into a rut of trying to figure it out and fix it myself. Applying for jobs (as if I have time for one more job), looking for a greener pasture, begging God for an answer, feeling neglected because I don’t have a nicer house, or car or whatever temporal thing the enemy throws up in my face to cause me to think God loves others more than me.

bob_the_builder-can_we_fix_it_s

But as I’ve wrestled with this season of discontent, God has sent me answers: Be Still. Be grateful. Trust.

Be still? BE STILL? That’s hard for a fixer and a doer! Very hard! But He has confirmed it to me in several ways. First, through a message preached on a Sunday morning, and through scripture I’ve read. Then, in a tiny gift I received weeks ago but just today found and opened. It was a magnet that said, “Be still and know that I am God.. Psalm 46:10.”

bestill

I laughed when I saw it. Okay, God. I get it. I get the message. You’ll take care of me while I obey. I trust You even when it doesn’t make sense and all around me is debt and bills and a scary economy. I trust You the way the little birds do. You are up to something good on my behalf. I receive it. I need only to be still (Exodus 14:14).

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How fitting at Thanksgiving time that God would remind me of the need for gratefulness in overcoming fear for the future. I believe that gratefulness is what leads to contentment.

givethanks

The little sparrows aren’t fretting about tomorrow. They aren’t thinking that God loves them less because their nest isn’t as fancy as an eagle’s. They aren’t looking at those eagles and wishing for bigger wings.

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If the little birds can praise Him in their humble nests, then I, too, must praise Him and be grateful for the innumerable things He’s given me. My list of things I do have outnumbers what I don’t. This life is but for a season. I’ve lived most of my life with this realization. And I need to recognize when the enemy comes to fill my thoughts with fears and discontent.

Why should I worry_ Why should I (2)

I may never have a white silk couch or a beautiful mansion on this earth. But my ultimate destination is much more than I could ever imagine. When I’m feeling neglected because my furniture is worn and my car is rattling, I need only remember the priceless gift of His love.

His grace is more than enough.

cross

All the more reason to give thanks with a grateful heart.

twitter-117598_640Tweet this: God is up to something good!

 

 

 



 

4 replies
  1. Tom Threadgill
    Tom Threadgill says:

    So much of the U.S. is in the same situation financially. Thank God our trust is not in money (although if He wants to burden me with some, I’ll gladly take it 🙂 ), but in the hope of eternity. Our earthly retirement account (or lack thereof) is of no importance compared to the riches that await!

    Reply
  2. J'nell Ciesielski
    J'nell Ciesielski says:

    Oh, this is such a good lesson for me to learn and remember. I often find myself discontent and I shouldn’t be! Honestly, I have nothing to complain about, but yet there’s always a new pair of shoes or a newer car that catches my eye. But it’s not about that.

    Reply
    • Karla Akins
      Karla Akins says:

      J’nell, it really isn’t. We can’t take anything with us and all we leave behind is the love we shared with others. My legacy isn’t cars and houses, but the Love of Christ. Must remember this!! Thanks for reading, and it’s good to know I’m not alone in the struggle. 🙂

      Reply

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