3-Week Series: Double Blessing


Summary: Thanksgiving

The Attitude of Gratitude

[2] I hope everyone had as good a Thanksgiving as my family and I had. It was a truly blessed day. We were able to sit around together and actually think about what we were thankful for.

Thanksgiving is one of those days when we usually find some time to be thankful. We look around and see all our family and friends; We go around the table and say what we’re thankful for; We feast on some of the best food around. Thanksgiving is a day of thanks!

But how do we translate that into a daily mentality. I mean, how can we become people who possess an [3] attitude of gratitude all year long. Wouldn’t it be sad if Thanksgiving and other selected times throughout the year we were thankful – as opposed to being content and thankful most of the time? We ought to and can be thankful people. We shouldn’t just have times when we’re thankful. We should possess an attitude of gratitude that typifies who we really are.

But first, let’s take a little quiz to see if we already have an attitude of gratitude or if we need some help in this area. The answers are multiple choice – a. gratitude, b. grit, c. grouch.

So when it comes to life’s circumstances and what goes on each day, how do you respond? with a. gratitude, b. grit, c. grouch.

1. You are in the 10 item express lane at Publics with your 2 cans of green beans, 1 can of Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom Soup and your debit card in hand. The person in front of you has 17 items, (you know because you counted them), and a checkbook that they have to dig deep down in their purse to find. How do you respond?

A. Gratitude for the Green Bean Bake your family will enjoy.

B. Grit your teeth and wonder if the guy ahead of you failed math or reading.

C. Grouch by yelling at the cashier, “Checkout Line Violation! 17 items! 17 items!”

2. You receive a letter from the IRS, stating you will soon be receiving a $1,000 refund on your tax return, how do you respond?

A. Gratitude to live in America, the land of the free and the home of the brave.

B. Grit your teeth about the other $10,000 you paid in taxes last year.

C. Grouch and rip the letter to shreds because you deserve more.

3. You receive a letter from the IRS, stating you will be audited. How do you respond?

A. Gratitude to live in America, the land of the free and the home of the brave.

B. Grit your teeth and call your accountant.

C. Grouch write the paper an angry letter about tax oppression in the USA.

4. You are driving your daughter to school, and as you drop her off, the car in front of you decides to just park there, trapping you in the school parking lot. How do you respond?

A. Gratitude to spend some time just to think and pray.

B. Grit your teeth as you try and patiently wait out the other driver.

C. Grouch and honk your horn continuously until you sound out “move your car” in Morse code.

Let’s see how we did. If you had all A’s, you need to preach this message. If you had all B’s for your answers, you need to take a breath and chillax. If you had all C’s for your answers, you may need therapy. If you had a mixture of A’s, B’s, and C’s, welcome to the club. Most of us would probably say that we could be more consistent with our thankfulness. Most of us would say that its sometimes hard to be thankful when we go through difficult times. But I’ll bet that most of us would say that we want to be more content and thankful in our lives.

So how do we do that? How do we become people with an attitude of gratitude? Let’s go [4] to the book of Philippians and let God teach us through the life and inspired words of Paul.

[Read Philippians 4:4-7.]

First of all, an [5] attitude of gratitude begins with prayer.

Last week we talked about how the God of the universe wants to listen to us. He leans in to hear us when we pray to Him. He wants and enjoys hearing the words come out of our mouths directly to Him. If we want to be a thankful person we need to be a praying person.

So often the trials of life bog us down. So often the business of life distracts us. So often the labor of life wears us out. What do we do when life’s needs overwhelm us?

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