The Lost Art of Gratitude

As my girls scurry around, packing for an upcoming conference, I am making thank you notes.

I remember, as a little girl, on Christmases and birthdays, before I went to bed at night, a thank you note would be penned to each and every person who took the time to invest in me. As a small girl, those notes were stick figure crayon drawings and as I matured, so did the content of the notes. My mother ensured that I understood the value of not only saying “thank you” but also demonstrating my appreciation.

The conference that the girls are attending is a big deal. There are high level social, political and educational speakers; the girls are being fully sponsored to cover flights, hotels, meals and all conference costs (to the tune of thousands of dollars). When I was reading over the agenda, I was amazed to see that a whole session was dedicated to thank you notes.

I organize a lot of events and activities. At the end, there are always some who come to me to say thank you. Most of the thanks I receive, however, is in the knowledge that I did something to help someone else. A thank you note in no way diminishes the value of the giving. What it does do, is let the giver know that you value them, their time, their investment, their commitment to serving.

The Bible speaks a lot about giving thanks.

God tells us to make a big deal about giving praise and thanks.

2 Chronicles 5:13

The trumpeters and musicians joined in unison to give praise and thanks to the LORD. Accompanied by trumpets, cymbals and other instruments, the singers raised their voices in praise to the LORD and sang: “He is good; His love endures forever.”

Jeremiah 30:19

From them will come songs of thanksgiving and the sound of rejoicing.

God tells us that He is the reason for giving thanks.

James 1:17

Every good and perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

2 Corinthians 9:11

You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.

Psalm 107:8-9

Let them give thanks to the LORD for His unfailing love and His wonderful deeds for mankind…

God tells us that giving thanks tells the world about Him.

Psalm 9:1

I will give thanks to you, LORD, with all my heart; I will tell of all Your wonderful deeds.

Isaiah 12:4

In that day you will say; “Give praise to the LORD, proclaim His name; make known among the nations what He has done, and proclaim that His name is exalted.

At the end of the day, cultivating an attitude of thankfulness is what God is calling us to do.

1 Thessalonians 5:18

give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:11-13

I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content [thankful].

Today, I encourage you to find someone to say thank you to and then lift that person up to the LORD as you thank Him for all of the blessings in your life.

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