Choosing Gratitude

I recently read Choosing Gratitude by Nancy DeMoss and I just wanted to share some thoughts/quotes from what I read. If you haven’t read this book, it is definitely one you should read.

Nancy DeMoss challenges and equips the reader of this book to live a life of intentional thankfulness based on the thankfulness of the freedom that Christ has provided for us and for the blessings that other people have in our lives. By intentionally having an attitude of thankfulness, we replace bitterness and entitlement with being humbled and joyfulness. To not choose gratitude is more costly than we usually realize. Not just to those around us, but to ourselves as well. 

At the end of one of the chapters she writes, “If you read this book from cover to cover, and are moved by the stories, nod your agreement, even say, ‘that was a great book!’-and then simply move on with your life, my purpose in writing it will have failed. It is my intent to issue a call to a radically different way of thinking, living, viewing life, and responding to God’s grace.”

This was a very encouraging book, yet convicting. I found many ways I can be more intentional with my attitude of thankfulness and I will take many of the things she mentioned in the book and apply them to my life.

If you haven’t read it, you need to go read it. It will change your perspective on gratitude.

I just want to share a few thoughts and quotes that stuck out to me.

“Gratitude is not the quiet game. It begs to be expressed, both to God and to others. “Silent Gratitude”, Gladys Bethe Stern said, isn’t much use to anyone.” We can’t just assume that people automatically know what were thankful for or that were thankful for them. We have to express it. “For gratitude to become a true joy maker in our heart, it must be expressed everywhere, at every opportunity, both privately before God and publicly before others.” It doesn’t matter how you express your gratitude, whether by card, email, phone call or in person; what is important is that the person receives your gratitude and that you have developing a heart of gratitude.

But “how grateful are you to God when no one else is looking? How quick are you to give thanks to God when everyone is looking? How much space does gratitude take up in your everyday interactions with others? Gratitude is not just for private consumption but for public conversation.”

“To give thanks to Him for all things, is, indeed, a very difficult duty; for it includes giving thanks for trials of all kinds; for suffering and pain; for reproaches; for loneliness. Yet those who have learned submission will not find it a hard duty” says Priscilla Maurice.

“Most of us are able to thank God for His grace, comfort and sustaining power in a trial, but we don’t thank Him for the problem, just finding Him in it.”

Another other thing that stuck out to me. She talks about how to create a spirit of thankfulness within marriage (obviously I;m not at that stage in life,) but you don’t even just have to think of this in regards to marriage, you can think of this with anything you can apply it to. Here is what she says “for the next 30 days, purpose not to say anything negative about your husband” (or fill in the blank, but for the purpose of this I will just use husband since that is what she uses),” – not to him and not to anyone else about him. Every day for the next 30 days, express at least one thing you admire or appreciate about your husband. Say it to him and to someone else about him.” If you do this (with anyone or thing you apply it to), your perspective will be gratefully changed and you will probably think more carefully about what you say.

“I have learned that in every circumstance that comes my way, I can choose to respond in one of two ways: I can whine – or –  I can worship! And I can’t worship without giving thanks. It just isn’t possible.”

Next time a situation comes your way will you worship with gratitude or will you whine with discontentment.

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