A Thankful Heart 3 - How to become thankful!
How do you become thankful?
Whatever you think about throughout the day, will affect your whole personality and mood. If you spend your day thinking about golf, you will become a golf fanatic. If you spend your time thinking about traveling, you'll want to always be going somewhere or doing something... you will spend your day daydreaming about being somewhere on vacation.
If you spend your day thinking about the negative things around you and things you can complain about, you will develop a pessimistic personality. It will pull you down, and since pessimism and optimism are opposites, whichever one you allow to feed your mind will eventually push the other one farther and farther away.
One of the vital steps to developing a thankful personality, is to meditate (that is to think about often) the things that you have in your life to be thankful for. Make a list of the things God has done for you, and keep those things on your mind throughout the day. It may take a little more work at first, especially if your mind is programmed to think negatively. This process is the tearing down of strongholds and the renewing of your mind as God's Word tells us:
Romans 12:2, "And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."
How do we renew our minds? Do we renew them by sitting in church, daydreaming about other things? No, we renew our minds by feeding and meditating on uplifting things (blessings in our lives) and the truth in God's Word. A pastor can help feed us the truth is he or she is preaching the Word of God as the Word was meant to be preached, but it is upto us to take what we hear and allow our minds to feast upon it. Philippines tells us what we are to set our minds upon... which includes the things that are uplifting, lovely, of good report, etc.
Philippines 4:8, "Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things."
Why are newborn Christians so on fire for God? Because their newborn experience is fresh on their mind... they think about it all the time, and since it's a glorious thing to think about, they are naturally all fired up over their newfound relationship with God! The same is true when a person first comes into the baptism of the Holy Spirit. They are on cloud nine, because they are meditating or thinking often about the great gift they have been given! The reason so many Christians lose their fire, is because they've stopped thinking about the wonderful gifts they've been given. We as Christians should continue in this excitement and think often about our relationship with God and the blessings He's given us. If we do that in our everyday lives, we will come into perfect peace:
Isaiah 26:3, "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee."
My challenge to you is to stop and ask yourself, "What have I been thinking about for the past week?" If you want to change the way you perceive things, then you'll have to change the way you think. If you want to develop a thankful heart, then you'll need to meditate and think about the good things God has blessed you with. Even if it seems you have nothing to be thankful for, you have been blessed far beyond those living in the OT era, because of what Jesus has done for YOU! Healing, prosperity, joy, peace, and deliverance are all parts of what Jesus has done for YOU! God's Word tells us that ear hath not heard, nor eye seen the great things that lie ahead for those who love God! Every one of us have a LOT to be thankful for!
1 Corinthians 2:9, "But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him."
A Thankful Heart Part 1: How God sees a thankful heart & Even when things fell apart
A Thankful Heart Part 2: The seriousness of unthankfulness & Symptoms of an unthankful heart (Think your free from unthankfulness? Thank again!)
> A Thankful Heart Part 3: How to become thankful