One busy afternoon, I stopped to survey my surroundings.
Massive damage had been made by my wild kids. Toys were strewn from one end of the house to the other and a dumped over basket of clean, but piled laundry glared at me from the corner. Couch pillows were being used as stepping stones and books were being flung like arrows. Say what?! Frustration crept in my soul.
Overwhelmed by the chaos and work that loomed ahead, I sighed in frustration. It was in those moments of irritation, God reminded me what I was truly seeing before me.
He prompted me to see piles of blessings instead of piles of mess.
Perspective changes everything.
In all its cluttered glory, my house was a reminder of how God had worked in the life of our family.
Faithfully, He provided for our basic needs even when money was tight and food was scarce. The mess that loomed before me was actually piles of blessings all over my floor.
The laundry stacked a mile high meant that my family had clean clothes to wear.
Stacks of dishes piled in the sink meant that we had food to eat and our stomachs were full.
A house that desperately needed to be scrubbed meant there was a roof over our head.
It was in those moments of frustration, where God opened my eyes to His blessings and changed my outlook forever. Honestly, God used my frustration that afternoon to spark hope and change in my soul simply with one word.
Truthfully, gratitude can change a person to the core. I’m learning that there is always something to be thankful for, even when it’s difficult to view our circumstances as a gift.
Through the gift of Jesus at the cross, we can rejoice in Him no matter what comes our way. Since He graciously paid our sin debt, we can learn to filter our circumstances through the lens of the Gospel. Thus, making it simple to embrace an attitude of gratitude because of the sacrifice of Jesus.
Starting a gratitude journal
There’s no better way to record your blessings than through a Gratitude Journal. It will radically shift your perspective and focus your heart on what really matters. (I know it has realigned my priorities for sure!)
To begin, simply take a few minutes each day during your quiet time to journal your thanks to God for His many blessings. Use the prompts below as a guide and to help you remember God’s faithfulness.
When those moments of frustration threaten to consume and haunt your heart, use your gratitude journal to remember God’s faithfulness and His provision. As you reflect on the expressions of love He’s bestowed upon your life, it’s hard to stay down for long.
50 Prayer Prompts for Your Gratitude Journal
Grateful for relationships…
- Godly friendships
- Those in my life who don’t know Jesus (so I can show them the way)
- My family
- My close friends
- Those placed in authority over me
- Those God has called me to minister to
- Those relationships that are hard and stretch me
- Broken relationships- as I trust that God will restore and redeem them
- The chance to shine Jesus to others on a daily basis
- The ability to love others well because of Jesus
Grateful for faith-filled blessings…
- God’s beautiful creations
- That God’s grace covers all our sins
- The ability to bring our troubles to God in prayer
- An opportunity to pray for others in need
- God’s mercy
- The strength God provides
- That God carries us through the storms of life
- God’s provision
- The direction and guidance of the Lord
- That God is with us in all circumstances
- God’s love is steadfast
- How God’s love pursues us where we are
- That Jesus was the perfect example for us on earth
- God is patient
- That God is faithful
- God is constant
- Jesus is pure and flawless
- Our identity is in Christ alone
- God is trustworthy
- The Lord still moves
- God still changes lives and transforms hearts
- That God will come again for His children
- God still reigns
Grateful for material possessions….
- Our home and shelter
- Clothing to cover our bodies
- Food to nourish
- The “extras” in life, even when they are scarce
- Material things I take for granted (that others would love to have)
- Clean water
- Education and the chance to better our circumstances
Our identity in Christ…
- God washes away our inequities and we are a new creation in Christ
- When we have been redeemed in Christ, God sees us as holy
- God exchanges our sinful life for new life in Him
- Restores our joy and hope through Christ
- God’s power can break our old habits and strongholds
- We don’t have to live in fear or defeat
- God gives us a spirit of self-discipline
- We have a spirit of love because of God
- God gives us peace and contentment
- We are not in control, but God guides our path
May we learn to embrace an attitude of gratitude and give God the rightful thanks He deserves. Even when times are tough, may we look to the Lord as the source of our strength and joy, trusting that He is faithful to His children.
How do you praise and give thanks to God even when life is hectic? What one thing can you stop and give thanks for right now?