If you're not clicking on the links, you have no idea what I'm talking about, right? So click on the links! Don't have time? Ok, fine...
I'm talking about keeping a list (that never ends) of things for which you are thankful. My friend Carrie over at Carrie's Busy Nothings is starting a "Thankful For..." linky, which I believe will be up every week. I'll be linking up there today, and if you'd like to participate too, then drop by!
Incidentally, I think this little exercise is one of the best you can do (and it's way more fun than push-ups).
To be honest, it's been a pretty rough couple of years for us. A few of the things we've gone through include: job loss and extended unemployment, financial challenges and super tight budgeting, a lot of slammed doors, the worst case of cancer we've ever seen and death of a very good friend, months of separation as my husband travelled with that friend to care for him during treatment, family illnesses and tough times, major life-changing decisions about Josh going back to school and all the logistics that go along with that, etc.
When I focus on all of those things, it's easy to get overwhelmed and start throwing a self-pity-party. (Imagine me rubbing my index finger over my thumb - it's the world's tiniest violin playing "My Heart Cries Out for You.") I'm as susceptible to doing that as the next person, but I think I've found the cure (as long as I remember to USE it!):
I heard a sermon once in high school about thankfulness, and it has stuck with me ever since. I remember the pastor saying, "Coveteousness begins when you stop giving thanks." Sounds simple and logical, but it was a "lightbulb" moment for me. So now, whenever I'm tempted to start feeling sorry for myself, envying other people, or wishing for something other than what is, I try to start listing things I have to be thankful for instead. In spite of all of my "problems," things could be a LOT worse. Actually, compared with what some people are enduring in the world right now, I have absolutely NOTHING to complain about. So, in order to help cultivate that attitude and without any further ado, I begin my list....
I am thankful for:
1. Salvation in Jesus Christ. Not earned, not deserved, but given by grace through faith.
2. God's Word - I read this version: KJV - Defender's Study Bible by Dr. Henry Morris, Ph.D.
3. Josh - my best friend who, conveniently, is also my husband. :o)
4. My family
5. Josh's family
6. Harvey (What can I say? I love my dog.)
7. God's provision to meet all of our needs, when we need it.
8. Health - boy, do we take this one for granted when we have it.
9. The ability to be creative and all the possibilities there are for doing so.
10. Brownies. :o)
What are you thankful for this week?