Turning the Tides


I know I have shared in recent devotions about how I've been trying to be more thankful. Throughout the days and long nights, too, I purposefully find something to be thankful for. I've been trying to shift my whole mentality over to thankfulness instead of complaining. Honestly, my situation hasn't changed since I started focusing on gratitude instead of attitude, but I have noticed a couple of other things.

This morning, during my personal devotions, I found myself in Psalm 34. David, who was in a tough situation with King Abimelech, said, I will bless the Lord at all times, His praise shall continually be in my mouth. As I read that verse over two or three times, I wondered, honestly, if it was even possible. Can I really praise God all the time? Can His praises really be in my mouth continually? I was meditating on this phenomenon (tongue-in-cheek there) when I thought of a familiar verse out of Philippians. In the second chapter, verse 14, Paul urges the believers to do all things without complaining and disputing. I wondered again - Is that even possible?

As I thought about these two scriptures, I had an interesting thought. Last week, we discusses how powerful thanksgiving can be. While I was thinking about praising God continually and not complaining, I had this thought. As I focused on thanking Him even for the smallest things, thanksgiving had pushed out complaining and bitterness. I wasn't thinking about stopping the complaining, but it didn't have room to live here when I focused on finding things to be thankful for. It was quite the revelation since I wasn't really working on NOT complaining, but thanksgiving pushed it all out.

I wonder if the Children of Israel would have had a shorter journey had they learned to be thankful instead of grumbling and complaining across the wilderness. It would have at least made the journey more pleasant, even though it wouldn't have changed the wilderness. Our circumstances may not change with thanksgiving - but a heart set on gratitude toward God can change us.

Today, I will continue to look for things I can thank God for. My meditations will be on the positives, like how He stays with me, comforts me, and carries me as needed. I'll shift my focus to the ways He doesn't change in a world where everything seems to change on a dime. I'll remind myself of His faithfulness that remains, his foundation that stands, and His love that endures. I'll give thanks to Him today as I trust Him to get me through just one more day. Will you join me?

Book cover of the 1 John Study Guide

I have two bookstores of devotionals, Bible study guides, poetry, and more! You can get my downloadable eBooks (some are free!) from Dove's Fire Ministries Bookstore. A few of them are also available in print or for Kindle on Amazon!

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