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Greatfulness | Devotion from Steve Thomas, our Connect Groups Chair (Nov. 24)

How many of us go through our days parched and empty, thirsting after happiness, when we’re really standing knee-deep in the river of abundance? – Sarah Ben Breathnach from Wake Up Grateful

I am currently reading a book by Kristi Nelson called Wake Up Grateful – and once again my eyes are being opened. I am normally a glass-half-full guy so I tend to look at the positives during my daily walk. But while reading the book, I began to question the depth of my “gratefulness”.

Let me share a defining moment that impacted me with you. Recently my son, Andrew, and I were watching a fun, action-packed movie together. During one scene, the protagonist was hanging on a rope underneath a moving helicopter that was flying through a very mountainous area. Andrew questioned why the people in the helicopter couldn’t see the man hanging underneath the helicopter. I explained that they were flying the helicopter at a high speed and their concentration was there – focusing on flying the helicopter at the high speeds. However, Andrew quickly responded with an astute remark that made me think; he said “but look at the magnificent views they are missing if they aren’t looking around”!

Andrew got it even when I did not. He saw the beauty of the world when I only saw the people (and helicopter) moving. How often are we unable to see the forest through all the trees?

Do you take the time to be truly grateful for all the positives in your life? Think about a bad time in your life and all you want to do is make it the next step. Make it that next minute. And then … you are past it and you a flooded with GRATEFULNESS! But … you soon forget that gratefulness and move on back to normal.

Paul spoke to the Thessalonians thusly;

Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 NIV

Give thanks always. Be grateful. Your family. Your church. Your car. A soft chair. Beautiful music. A bird chirping. Clouds. A sweet smell. A wonderful taste.

A quote from Mary Jean Irion in Wake Up Grateful really caught my eye.

Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure that you are. Let me learn from you, love you, savor you, bless you before you depart. Let me not pass you by in quest of some rare and perfect tomorrow.

Wow. Just re-read that passage one more time and think about how blessed you really are. Every day may not be filled with sunshine or moments of the spectacular, but if you take a moment to breathe in the fresh air and look around, I think you will agree that we are ALL very blessed. I am definitely going to wake up every morning with a prayer of thanksgiving and gratefulness. And then I am going to try to spend each and every minute of every day being more grateful.

That’s what I am going to do. I hope you do too.

Steve Thomas