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Cindy Dennis

Executive Director

The Power of a Grateful Heart

I have enjoyed seeing the signs of fall unfold around me with the colorful leaves, pumpkins patches decorating garden shops, and stores stocked full of supplies for the Thanksgiving holiday meal preparation. What an honor it is to have Thanksgiving declared as a national holiday in the United States, celebrated each year on the fourth Thursday of November. Our Thanksgiving celebration dates to the early 1600s when British settlers (my relatives) and Native Americans came together during the harvest season to give thanks to God for His bounty, protection, and provision. As a direct descendant of those who celebrated that first Thanksgiving in New England, I desire to pass down these same values of having a thankful heart to my children and grandchildren.

Not only do I want to take time to give thanks and have a grateful heart at Thanksgiving, but also to live a life of thankfulness all year long.

1 Thessalians 5:18 (AMPC) reminds us to “Thank [God] in everything [no matter what the circumstances may be, be thankful and give thanks], for this is the will of God for you…” Did you notice this scripture reminds us to choose to be thankful no matter what the circumstances? What a difference it would make in our circumstances if we would choose to no longer “complain OR remain,” but have an “attitude of gratitude.”

Having a thankful heart is a choice and it is a discipline we need to practice intentionally. Colossians 3:17 (MSG) reminds us to “cultivate thankfulness” and Colossians 2:7 (MSG) says to “let your living spill over into thanksgiving.”

It is easy to focus on what we don’t have, to compare ourselves with others; however, there are benefits to being thankful for all the blessings we already have in our life. Studies show that being grateful improves your physical health and helps you be healthier. Thankfulness also improves psychological health and reduces depression and frustration. Let’s choose not only to be thankful this holiday season, but also to release the power of having a thankful heart regardless of our current circumstances each day of our lives! HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

And whatever you do or say, let it be as a representative of the Lord Jesus, and come with him into the presence of God the Father to give him your thanks.—Colossians 3:17 TLB Cindy


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