Being thankful can sometimes be so hard, am I right? It is so easy to dwell in the negativity and choose to see the blessings that God has given us. In the spirit of Thanksgiving approaching, here are 10 tips I try to apply in my own life when I am trying to be more thankful. These tips are absolutely not limited to this time of year though and can be applied all year long.
- Start your day off with prayer and reading your Bible. Just spend some time with God and Him alone. It is so easy to try to snag a few extra minutes of sleep, or go straight to your phone. Instead, make a conscious effort to consistently start your day off by reading and talking to God.
- Do not look at your phone for the first 30 mins-1 hour when you first wake up. I got this idea from another blogger and started doing it this summer. Sometimes it is hard during the semester because I only wake up an hour or so before I have to leave, but I find myself in the days where I do this praising God for what He has blessed me with. It is a welcome change from the constant scrolling and focusing on other’s lives more than my own.
- Listen to worship music while you are getting ready in the mornings. Many of you may be thinking that worship music would just put you back to sleep. I felt this way for a long time because I used to listen to any type of secular music that would get me hype for my day. However, instead of finding music that made me feel this way, I found when I listened to worship music I was more grateful for the things given to me and I was less irritable throughout my day.
- Keep a blessings jar. It may sound silly at first, but last year my college gals and I did a bible study where the author encouraged us to keep a blessings jar. We all started doing it and would go back and look at our blessings whether they are big or small whenever we felt down. It is a small way to remember how faithful the Lord is to us. So grab a mason jar, some sticky notes and whenever a blessing comes your way write it down and stick it in the jar for later.
- Start your prayers by thanking God. This helps you to come before God with more than just a list of things for Him to do for you. Instead, this brings you closer to Him by reminding yourself of how faithful God is.
- Encourage others around you. So often in this culture of comparison, we can fall into self pity and discontent. Rather than feeling sorry for ourselves, let us go out and encourage someone who may be in a worse situation than we are. This will help us see how good God is and He will be able to bless us through blessing others.
- Go out of your way to serve someone. Pray and look for opportunities to go out of your way serve others. This could be as simple as helping an older lady take the groceries to her car, giving someone directions, lending money to a friend or putting your phone down and being a listening ear to someone who needs you.
- Turn the negative into positive. When your boss is yelling at you at work, thank God for a job. When your car is breaking down, be thankful you have a car. When your stressed out over school, be thankful you have an education. When you do not have a lot, be thankful for what you have. When you are single, be thankful for extra time with friends and the Lord. It is all about perspective.
- Be still. Take time to just be silent and still before the Lord. Let Him speak to your heart. Let him pour into you. For me, this looks like turning the music off when going to school in the mornings or work in the afternoons. Maybe it means getting up extra early to see the sunrise or going somewhere alone to watch the sunset.
- Give it to God and do not pick it back up. When you give your stresses, frustrations and struggles to the Lord do not turn back to it or pick it back up again. Just keep walking and let Him take care of it.
“O give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; For His lovingkindness is everlasting.” -1 Chronicles 16:34
We hope these tips will help you find yourself in a season of continual thankfulness. Always remember, God is for you not against you! He loves you and wants the best for you.
Founder of Woven Together
(With some added wisdom from Katie (Outreach Director) and Lauren (Co-Founder))
As always, the Woven Together team is here for you. If you would like to contact us for prayer, encouragement, advice, or just someone to talk to, you can reach us on our Facebook, Instagram ( @_woventogether) or Twitter ( @_woventogether). You can also email us at firstname.lastname@example.org