I remember growing up in church and singing the old hymn, "Count your Blessings." It's been years since I've heard this song in church, but as we gather with family and friends to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday, perhaps it's time to dust of the lyrics. If you are not familiar with the song, here is the first verse:
When upon life’s billows you are tempest-tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.
Written in 1897, Johnson Oatman reminded us not to forget what God has already done in our lives. If you are a future-oriented person like me, it's easy to forget past blessings.
Gratitude is powerful. Intentionally being thankful reorients our focus. It reminds of important things we have forgotten. As a result, discouragement lessens, cynicism fades, and a peaceful acceptance replaces frustration.
I'll never forget a conversation with a deeply discouraged man. Standing at the front of our church auditorium, he expressed his doubt that his circumstances would ever change. I tried to encourage him by reminding him of what God had already done for him. His response? "I can't think of one thing God has done for me."
We've all fought discouragement, and even despair, but there really is something about counting our blessings. Writing a new gratitude list gives us a fresh perspective and reminds us of how many blessings we honestly have.
This Thanksgiving, I want to say "thank you" to you.
I pray you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday!
Hi! I'm Loren Hicks. I am follower of Jesus, a husband, a father, a friend, and for the past