Thankful Hearts

Post Date: November 18, 2022
Author: Laura Stephens

If you are like me, your mind is racing between so many things as we enter the holiday season. You are planning your holiday meals, working on Christmas lists, finishing up things for this year, and, oh yeah, still doing the daily needed to do’s.  I must remind myself that, yes, all this busyness is still a gift – opportunities to be with those we love, preparing for the joy of giving gifts, and having the ability to survive (and hopefully thrive) in life.

Next week, we celebrate the feast of Thanksgiving when we remember the special celebration of the Pilgrims and the Native Americans together expressing their gratitude for abundance and relationships. However, the act and expressing of thanksgivings has been around for ages. It is a natural action of a heart that realizes the many gifts we are given are blessings that we ourselves cannot achieve completely on our own. We are blessed and loved beyond measure.

To have a thankful heart, we must give thanks! It seems so simple but sometimes it is harder to see the blessings and even harder to take the time to stop and appreciate it.

Let me invite you to slow down for just a few minutes this coming week and allow your heart to reflect on the many blessings in your life. This could also be a wonderful faith experience before Thanksgiving dinner to stop and reflect on what we should give thanks to God for.

  • Thank you, God, for my family for their…
  • Thank you, God, for my health that allows me to…
  • Thank you, God, for my faith that…
  • Thank you, God, for meeting my needs of…
  • Thank you, God, for my crosses…
  • Thank you, God, for my joys…
  • Thank you, God, for this day…
  • Thank you, God, for this amazing Earth…
  • Thank you, God, for the freedoms of this country…

Some of the most beautiful expressions of thanksgiving are found in the Psalms of the Old Testament. Here are some Psalms to complete your time of reflective gratitude. You could even encourage your family to reflect on each of these five Thanksgiving verses from the Psalms in the days leading up to Thanksgiving:

  • Sunday – Attend the greatest thanksgiving feast – the Eucharistic Meal especially as we honor Christ the King this Sunday.
  • Monday – In God we have boasted all the day long; Your name we will praise forever. Psalm 44:9
  • Tuesday – I will praise You with all my heart, glorify Your name forever, Lord my God. Psalm 86:12
  • Wednesday – Enter His gates with thanksgiving, His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him, bless His name. Psalm 100:4
  • Thursday – Let them thank the LORD for his mercy, such wondrous deeds for the children of Adam. For he satisfied the thirsty, filled the hungry with good things. Psalm 107:8-9

This flow of gratitude from your heart allows you to have a more joyful, patient attitude towards the hustle and bustle of life. Fill yourself up with gratitude for your life and especially your family; then those little (or sometimes bigger) annoyances you must endure will not seem quite as challenging. The act of thanking God will also ultimately bring you closer to Him. You will discover the depth of God’s love and just how much He really does provide for you in every way! May your thankful hearts bring you peace and joy every day, especially in this Thanksgiving week!

“Give thanks to the LORD for He is good, His mercy endures forever!”
-Psalm 107:1

May your family have a blessed Thanksgiving!

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