While we tend to chuckle afterward, the sentiment runs deep. We’ve been given too many wonderful things to even have time to complain. However, in many instances, it’s easier said than done.
How do we combat the need to vent about the things that really irk us? It’s easy — just do as my mom says and, “have an attitude of gratitude.”
But, it’s not just her that reminds me of this life lesson. The Good Word says it, too.
“In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you” (1 Thessalonians 5:18).
Not just the big things. Not even just the little things. And certainly not just on Sundays.
But “in every thing.”
That means even when times get tough and the bills pile up. That means even when your grandfather passes away. That means even when your girlfriend breaks up with you. That means even when your car breaks down.
How in the world did God expect us to have this kind of spirit?
He sends us little reminders along the way. He lets us know that even in the midst of that storm, He’s right there. If we believe that God is unchanging, then we know with assurance that He is the same no matter the circumstances of life. Just that alone is worthy of praise!
“For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion; in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me; he shall set me up upon a rock” (Psalm 27:5).
I read a quote recently that said, “Until God opens the next door for you, praise Him in the hallway.” Sometimes it’s hard to understand why we’re in a particular situation or why we’re going through a specific trial — but God knows.
As a writer by profession, I often hit the ever-looming writer’s block. My mind goes blank and I don’t even know where to begin my next sentence. I’ve learned over the years that I simply need to change my perspective. Instead of letting my mind wander first to the thoughts of gloom and doom, I make a cup of tea or go for a walk. And, most times, making that simple change breathes fresh thoughts into my mind. When I sit down to write next time, I’m refreshed and ready to go.
It’s the same with giving thanks. It’s more than just a feeling but rather an entirely new approach. And let’s be honest: It’s challenging! But, as we know, the Lord never gives us something we can’t handle (with His help).
So I say bring on the valleys of life — we know they will come. But, we will never face them alone. Praise Him for those valleys because when you’re on top of the mountain (which you inevitably will be in His time), you’ll be extra thankful that He brought you through.
This article has undergone ministry review and approval.