We have this ultimate decision though, every single day of our lives. We see gratitude and thankfulness during the end of the year holidays, but what about the other ten months out of the year?
What does your life look like after the holiday rush?
What attitude do you choose to live with in the Springtime when your child brings home a bad report card? What attitude do you choose to have when your plans don’t go the way you imagined them to go? Do you have a grateful heart when your spouse doesn’t meet your expectations? Do you have a compassionate heart when your child is in the middle of the biggest temper tantrum of his life?
Are you in a state of gratefulness when the bills aren’t paid, when the floors aren’t mopped, or when someone just rubs you the wrong way?
I’d love to sit here and say that I live in a state of thankfulness every day—but I don’t.
Let’s just be honest here. I choose not to be grateful every day. And that’s what it truly boils down to.
I’ve gotten better over the years, but I’m not perfect. That’s the beauty of blogging—you get to share your life, but you don’t always share the parts that you’re not willing to put on display just yet. We all have those moments, it’s not just bloggers. Except, people in a leadership role or who have influence (such as bloggers) are always held to such high regard, that when they let people down, they are seen as having sinned worse than the one reading or following, or are seen to have lied in some way about their life. When in reality, the people who follow them are simply placing them on a pedestal of idolatry—choosing to follow their lives more closely than the life of Christ, or the commandments He’s given to us.
It is the root of all disappointment—expectations.
One of my favorite quotes is this—
You aren’t called to follow Christians, you are called to follow Christ, because most certainly, you’ll be disappointed if you follow Christians.
Have you ever heard the saying, love is a choice?
It’s especially true in marriage.
After you’ve been married for some time, you’ll realize that there are a whole lot of things you don’t “like” about your spouse. It happens in every marriage. Maybe it’s the way they laugh, the way they eat, the way they spray toothpaste on the bathroom mirror when they brush their teeth (c’mon ladies, you get this one!).
“Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus”
1 Thessalonians 5:18
“Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do,whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”
There is no one scripture that fixes it all or tells you how to live life. This I promise you.
That is why we’re encouraged to let the message of Christ dwell among us and within us. Throughout the Bible we constantly see these things together—love, joy, peace, and finally, gratefulness. And there are tidbits of wisdom that tell us how to live in a state of gratefulness and peace. In fact, in 1 Peter we are encouraged to pursue peace at all times. Pursue it! What a strong word—pursue. Do you know what that means? It means you must take an action to seek out peace, because in our natural state of humanity, we are not peacekeepers or peace makers. You are in charge of making your own peace at times. And in James 2, we’re very clearly told that faith without deeds (or works) is dead. There is action, there is always action and movement on our part. Christianity isn’t simply saying “God I’m sad, give me peace”. There is an action on our part at all times….pursing peace, choosing joy, choosing love…..