Thanksgiving is coming soon and I’m excited about being with family, eating a bronzed turkey, and enjoying all sorts of goodies.
I love the autumn colors, the rain, and windy, dark days. But, it’s well-known that unrelenting drizzle and little sunlight can seriously affect many people who live in Oregon, or similar climates.
In addition to the weather, there’s something else that can negatively affect us at this time of the year:
It’s focusing on what makes us sad or disappointed rather than thankful.
These emotions are part of our humanity, poignantly expressed in Scripture. In Psalm 77, Asaph wrote of crying out to God in his distress, wondering where God was, and if he was forgotten forever. But he didn’t stay stuck emotionally. Instead, he pivoted from focusing on his pain and recalled the powerful deeds of God (10-15).
If you’re struggling with depressing thoughts as the holiday season begins, let me encourage you to do the same. Look back, get a notebook, journal, or even the back of a nearby envelope and write down the following.
- List the powerful acts of God in YOUR life. Marvel at His grace. Let tears of gratitude flow.
- LIST the nicest things others have done for you. Include however many people you remember.
- What FEELINGS did you have when this happened? Try and use several descriptive words.
- What THOUGHTS, REFLECTIONS, or MEMORIES did these acts of kindness stir up?
When the apostle Paul finished his letter to the Romans, he remembered and recorded what people did for him. His long list flowed from a heart spilling over with thankfulness and his example especially fits this season of the year (Romans 16).
Want to show your gratitude to others, and to God, for caring about you? Here are three ways to do it:
- Start a list of people you thank God for. Add to it each day until Thanksgiving.
- Use your growing list to pray, thanking God for their part in your life.
- Between Thanksgiving and Christmas buy some meaningful Christmas cards. Write a note expressing your gratitude for some specific way they blessed you.
Do these three things and watch your heart swell with warm, thankful memories throughout the holidays—and the rainy season!
Qu. What is the most recent blessing that you are thanking God for? I’d love to share your joy. Leave a comment below.
Joy to You,