• Jill Jarrell Newsome

Goodness and Gracious

When I walk outside, whether, exercising or walking on the island, I use that time for gratitude prayers - no requests, just thank yous. I know I will never be able to thank God for all the things He has done for me. Think of the things that go on in one hour of our day that we take for granted. We are breathing. We can see, hear, taste, smell, touch, feel, talk, laugh, etc. We have shelter, food, jobs, can pay our bills, etc. We have family, friends and many of us have a church family and friends!

We have a relationship with the King of Kings, we have salvation, peace, hope, faith and love. If we do not have it then all we have to do is accept it. We are so blessed! I never thank Him for some of these things. I am trying to be more gracious about all of God's goodness! 1 Corinthians 1: 4, "I always give thanks to my God for you because of the grace he has given you through Christ Jesus."

The more we recognize our blessings the more we have a grateful heart. It can change our outlook. The more we start naming our blessings the more blessings we realize we have. It focuses our attention on the goodness of God.

Recognizing our blessings, helps us become more grateful even in the difficult times because we know God will give us the strength to make it through our struggle. It is easy to view God through our circumstances but we begin to realize God does not change even if our circumstances do. He sees the big picture and He knows what He’s doing. Everything God allows or withholds, every difficult season, everything we go through is meant for our good. 1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18, "Be joyful always, pray at all times, be thankful in all circumstances. This is what God wants from you in your life in union with Christ Jesus." Hebrews 12: 28, "Let us be thankful, then, because we receive a kingdom that cannot be shaken. Let us be grateful and worship God in a way that will please him, with reverence and awe."

God calls us to praise His name. Psalm 118: 1, "Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever." Psalm 107: 1, "Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever." Isaiah 12: 4, "Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done, and proclaim that his name is exalted." 1 Chronicles 16: 34, "Give thanks to the Lord, because he is good; his love is eternal." Colossians 4: 2, "Be persistent in prayer, and keep alert as you pray, giving thanks to God."

When we praise God's name and glorify Him we are saying that we trust Him. He can do whatever that will bring glory and honor to Him. We are surrendering "our way" to see God's outcome. Or as a dear friend taught me, "we will find our way in His way"! He always has the best plan! Psalm 69: 30, "I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving." God is good and that everything will work out.

Have you listed your blessings today? 1 Chronicles 29: 13, "Now, our God, we give you thanks, and we praise your glorious name."

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