As a parent, one of the things I most appreciate is gratefulness from my daughter. I love to give and provide for her. That is in the DNA of parenting. In fact, I want to give and provide more and more. I love to bless her and see her smile. But an ungrateful heart can take the joy out of giving, even to my own child. Oh, I would still give, but the act becomes tarnished a bit if it lands upon a thankless heart.
I used to be a prickly cactus with a stony, ungrateful heart.
Some years ago before I married and while I was a Bible school student at CFNi, my parents picked me up from the airport. I flew home to Colorado from Texas for the Christmas holiday. As my parents and I walked across the parking lot, I was complaining and complaining about some mishap. Suddenly my mom stopped me and said, “You are so ungrateful.”
The words stung. But they were so true.
Later while alone, I prayed about that painful revelation. I needed someone to say bluntly, “You are so ungrateful.”
I had a true revelation about it and repented. In fact, it made me really sad to think that I had not appreciated and verbally expressed my gratitude to the many who had selflessly and lovingly given to me through the years.
Now I make it a habit to express gratitude. In fact, I am probably a little crazy about it. But it so changed my life, when I saw how much I do owe to others and how much I need to express it… from the smallest thing to the biggest… I owe my successes, accomplishments, blessings, and joys in life to the efforts and generosity of others.
Something happened when I began to express gratitude: it softened the soil of my relationships and made my friendships sweeter. It broke down that selfish feeling inside me that said I was alone and have made it in life by pulling myself up by the bootstraps.
The truth is we are all deeply connected and deeply need each other.
Some things happen in life though that are hard to be grateful about… some things are out of my control, and I feel the prickles of judgment or ungratefulness popping up around me. That is where faith comes in. It is good to express gratefulness to a good God, no matter how things look–no matter how painful.
I keep my life watered by expressing gratitude.. often and profusely. It causes a flower to pop up amid all the prickles of life. God is able to make the desert blossom like a rose…
Bottomline is God’s Word is true: He does cause all things to work for our good… There is no good thing that he withholds from the upright… He has stored up goodness for the righteous… His love never fails…
There is so much to be grateful for… just so much…