“In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18
“It’s not happy people who are thankful; it’s thankful people who are happy!” Unknown
- Pray to the Lord telling Him all the things in your life for which you are thankful. Tell your husband today how thankful you are that he provides for and protects you and your children.
- Read 1 Thessalonians 5: 12-23, and write verse 18 in your journal.
A Joyful Heart!
I am blessed with eight wonderful children, and I thank God for these precious gifts. In the Bible, God says that He makes “the barren woman to keep house and to be a joyful mother of children,” (Psalm 113:9 KJV), yet sometimes I feel tricked into thinking that my children are burdens. My thinking takes a wrong turn, and I find myself complaining about how loud they are or how messy they can be. They are my precious children, but sometimes I forget to “take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ,” (2 Corinthians 10:5). This is where beginning to praise God and thank Him for everything in my life changes everything!
When I wash the piles of dirty laundry, I have a choice; I can think, “Oh the dirty laundry is never-ending, and I can’t keep up with it.” Or I can think, “I am so thankful for my family and that we have clothes to wear.” The first thought gives in to self-pity, and the second thought allows my heart to flow with thanksgiving for God’s bountiful blessings. When one of my children spills his milk, I can choose to complain and ask him why he wasn’t more careful, or I can say, with a joyful spirit, “That’s okay! We’ll clean it up!” It’s all about choices, and the choices are up to me.
When my heart is full of thankfulness, I cannot complain! This goes for all areas of my life— cooking, cleaning, homeschooling, child-training, being submissive to my husband, and all the other responsibilities I have. My responsibilities are blessings, not burdens.
When I choose thankful thoughts, my heart becomes thankful, and I keep my focus on God. I love Ephesians 5:20, which says, “always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” God has shown me a way to fight negative, complaintive thoughts by using positive affirmations. It is powerful to claim the positive!
Here are some of the positive affirmations I claim:
• I love to do the laundry!
• I love to make meals for my family!
• I enjoy washing the dishes!
• I love teaching my children!
• I love tying my little ones’ shoes!
• I love changing my baby’s diaper!
• I love getting up in the middle of the night to nurse my baby!
Try it. It works! It is easy to get off track and start having stinking thinking when we are at home all day long every day with our precious children, and that is where reading our Bible each day helps our thoughts stay positive and hopeful. “Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things and the peace of God will be with you” (Philippians 4:8).
There is power in reading the Word of God. It stimulates positive thinking and a thankful heart. 2 Peter 3:1 says, “Beloved, this is now my second letter to you. Both of them are reminders to stir you to wholesome thinking.” This is exactly what reading my Bible does for me; it stimulates me to have wholesome, positive, thankful thoughts.
Blessings and Love,
Questions to Ponder
- What are your thoughts focused on during the day?
- Are you thankful that God gave you your precious children?
- How does having a thankful heart change your thoughts and outlook on life as a whole?
Write down at least ten things for which you are thankful.
Write down at least ten positive affirmations.
Sing the song “I Will Enter His Gates” throughout your day. See how long before your children are singing it too!
Read The 4:8 Principle by Tommy Newberry.
Write 1 Thessalonians 5:18 on an index card and post it on your refrigerator.