Enter into His gates with thanksgiving,
And into His courts with praise.
Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.
For the Lord is good;
His mercy is everlasting,
And His truth endures to all generations.
I have a challenge for us. Sometime in the next days leading up to Thanksgiving, let’s schedule a negativity-free, complaint-free, truth-speaking day. What better way to create a thankful heart than by working on our mindset?
A conversation Mary and I had about a week ago sparked this idea. We were talking about how hard life has felt over the last year or so. She said — and I agreed — that we were going to focus on a week with no negativity by thinking and speaking only biblical truth over our lives. We wanted to speak life-giving words and pray scripture over ourselves, our marriages, our families, our work, our health, our dreams, and __________ (you fill in the blank).
I have to admit that’s as far as I got. I promptly forgot about it. Mary on the other hand has been in her words, “struggling along, trying to make progress.”
So, I thought I would throw this challenge out for all of us. Let’s encourage each other and do this together. As we change our thoughts and words, a thankful heart will follow. Before we talk about how to do this, let’s briefly consider why it’s important. Here’s a list I made of what happens when we change our mindsets.
How To Grow a Thankful Heart
We’re going to keep it simple.
- Pick one (1) area to focus on for the day. Maybe you’re worn down caring for a parent. Possibly you have a marriage that needs a fresh breath of hope. Perhaps your job is driving you crazy. It could be you’re speaking too many negative words about your kids. Might you have a dream that you’re ready to give up on? Whatever it is, pray about it and let the Holy Spirit show you what your focus will be.
- Now pick a day to to stop thinking and talking negatively about this person/thing/relationship.
- And take it a step further. Pray and ask God for a new vision for this area. Make a list of positive things about it/him/her. What would you like to see happen? Write down a short-term or long-term goal. For example. Maybe your teenage son has been acting really immature. And you complain about him to your friends. Make a list of a few of his good points to break your complaining habit and then think of a goal. Your goal is for him to start acting more responsibly.
- Write down words of truth you can speak over him and pair it with a scripture. For example, instead of complaining to your friends you can say, “While I haven’t seen much change yet, I know that God is working on Mike. I am praying that Mike will put away childish things and act like a man as he grows.”
- Persevere. I’m certain this is going to take some time for us to break our bad habits. If you forget and complain, just start again. Keep it up. Try it the next day and the next again until this new way of thinking and speaking has become your new habit. Then if you want, you can tackle another negative thought/word.
Will You Join Us?
If you’re going to join us, why not leave us a comment that says “I’m in!” Or something like that. You don’t have to tell us what it’s about. That’s between you and God.
Let’s enter into the holiday with a thankful heart.