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Gratitude: An important part of each day

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Gratitude is something a lot of people forget about, but it is a concept that should be considered throughout each and every day. Why you ask? God gets us through each moment of every day. Sometimes things are not the way we want them to be. That's okay. They could be worse. Sometimes we have a close call--a near miss on the highway, a slip that did not result in a fall, a dangerous situation that comes out alright. Coincidence? Maybe, but most likely not. God protected us in these situations.

When realizing this, daily life takes on a whole new look. Even bad things that happen can be looked upon in a positive way. Sometimes bad events can bring about positive change. Hard times create stronger people. Living like those who have little can change the way we look at others. Instead of trying to "have it all," we should look at all that we have already; it may be more than what a lot of others have. Bad relationships can teach us about ourselves sometimes. It is said that we attract what we give out. This can be a frightening thought, but something to consider. Life gives us many lessons to learn. We should be grateful for it all.

How much time does it take to say, "Thank you" to God? It only takes a moment. It can be whispered under one's breath, shouted from the rooftops, or silently spoken in prayer. Whatever method is chosen, giving thanks to God for everything is something that should be considered. If not done throughout the day, a gratitude list can be a nice way to end the day. Prior to going to sleep at night, take a few moments to think of the day just past. Try to come up with five things that are reasons to be grateful. Express gratitude for a minimum of five things each day. Sometimes this process can help relieve the stress and tension of the day and make for a better night's sleep. Other times, it can help put the day into perspective, allowing for thoughts to come as for how to make the next day a little bit better. When giving thanks to God for little things, it opens the door for Him to grant us bigger and better things. 1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18 says, "Be joyful always, pray at all times, be thankful in all circumstances. This is what God wants from you in your life in union with Christ Jesus," (Good News Bible, 1979, New York, NY: American Bible Society).

By showing gratitude to God for everything, it becomes easier to show gratitude to others. It also brings more to be grateful for in our own lives.

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