I enjoy crafting and making signs for my home. One of the first signs I ever made says, “There is always something to be thankful for.” This saying has stuck with me through the years, and the sign still hangs in my laundry room reminding me to be thankful. In our house, we remind each other of this saying a lot. We even add a few extra “always, always” to it for good measure when one of us is struggling with complaining.
In God’s Word, we have been commanded to give thanks in everything. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 says, “In everything give thanks for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” I was talking to my friend, Dawn, recently who tragically lost her 13 year old son unexpectedly this past July. This is every parent’s nightmare! As we talked, she was mentioning things that have transpired in her life in addition to losing her son in the past year. This included her father-in-law’s battle with cancer, her mother-in-law's stroke, the complications with both of their day-to-day care, and recently finding out that her sister-in-law has breast cancer. Wow! It has been quite a year for my friend. Before I could find the words to respond to all of these hardships, she said something remarkable to me. She said, “but here is the thankful part.” She then proceeded to say how thankful she was that her in-laws had relocated to where she and her husband lived. This has allowed them to be able to help with their care. My friend, Dawn, is putting this verse into action! She decided to be thankful even in the midst of incredible hardship. She has embraced the truth that “there is always something to be thankful for.” How incredible and challenging!
Now that it’s November, Thanksgiving is just around the corner! Thanksgiving is one of my favorite days all year. It involves all my favorite things: yummy food, family time, and lots of thankfulness. Thankfulness is good and something that should be a part of our lives everyday, not just when we celebrate this holiday. Psalms 92:1 says, “It is a good thing to give thanks unto the LORD, and to sing praises unto thy name, O most High.” There have been studies done on having a thankful attitude, and there were several health benefits found. A thankful attitude can help reduce stress, lower blood pressure, and boost immunity to name a few. After conducting this study, Dr. P. Doraiswamy, of Duke University, said, “If thankfulness were a drug, it would be the world’s best-selling product with a health maintenance indication for every major organ system.”
I cannot say for sure if the Psalmist conducted his own study on thankfulness or knew all the health benefits, but he knew first hand that it was good to give thanks to God. Take the time over the next few weeks to exercise this good practice. Thank God for your family, your friends, your job, your home, your church, etc. Count your blessings and praise God for them!