Today, I want to talk to you about mindset and finding ways to be grateful every day through three components of gratitude. First, I want to apologize to you for not consistently posting the last several months. I have been experiencing the gamut of life. I experienced joy last summer when I was promoted at work. Then the end of the summer started a journey of pain, suffering, and struggle. Last month, my father-in-law lost the battle with pancreatic cancer.
The last seven months provided me insights into humanity, patient experience, and spirituality. During this journey I observed a man remaining faithful while his body failed him. Rewind to this past August, My father-in-law was filled with life, recently retired, and looking forward to spending time with his grandkids (they moved in across the street from us) and a week later started a downward spiral as the cancer began to destroy his body.
As I look back over the past seven months, I see the hand of the Lord working. Even though He didn’t take away the disease, He was there with us. There were big things God did that gave us more time with Papa, and there were small things He did to bring us comfort. God worked through numerous friends and family to help us through this battle. For this I am grateful.
Now to today, I recently read a blog post from John Ortberg on the Three Components of Gratitude. I adapted it for a staff devotion I had yesterday and I want to share it with you, too.
The benefit of gratitude is profound. It is a healing balm for the soul. I hope your takeaway from this post is a feeling of gratefulness.
The Three Components of Gratitude
“And be thankful. . . . sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, whether in word or in deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God through him.” (Colossians 3:15, 16, 17, NIV)
In Colossians, Paul reminds us (through his letter to the new church) to practice the very attitude of Jesus as we interact with each other and our neighbors. Paul listed a number of qualities like compassion, kindness, patience, and humility. Paul closes this section of his letter with an appeal for gratitude.
Pastor Ortberg breaks down gratitude into needing three components.
Three Components of Gratitude
“Praise the Lord, my soul . . . and forget not all his benefits — who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things . . .” (Psalm 103:2-5, NIV)
God gives us a gift. For us to be grateful, it is our job to recognize the gift and believe it is good.
“These are the benefits he gives us, and the soul responds with gratitude.” –John Ortberg
A quick Latin rundown, ‘bene’ which is “good,” combined with ‘factor’, which is related to the word factory. So one who does good, a benefactor, is a little factory that produces good.
For gratitude to take hold you need to see that the benefits or gifts you receive aren’t coincidences. Rather they are coming from Someone with good intentions. As Pastor Orberg says, “To be grateful as a Christian, you must believe that the good that is in your life comes from God. Not from your own efforts or merit. Not from others who might want to impress or manipulate you for their gain”
“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like a shifting shadows.” (James 1:17 NIV)
“Light is an expression of goodness, and when we consider what he has done for us and what he has given us, our souls are grateful.” – John Ortberg
YOU are the beneficiary of the benefits of a God who has your best interests at heart.
A grateful heart leads to a soul filled with gratitude.
Now as I mourn the passing of a great man, I am still able to see numerous gifts God gave me. I’m able to find gratitude in this chapter of my journey. This gratitude is healing the hurt and I look forward to the day we are all reunited.
This is my prayer today and I hope you let Matt Redman’s “10,000 Reasons” be your prayer, too.
Blessings to you,