Practicing the Heart-Habit of Gratitude

You are my God, and I will give thanks to you; you are my God; I will extol you. Psalm 119:28

Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus1 Thess. 5:18 NLT

Heavenly Father, we begin this September Friday with the heart-habit of gratitude, irrespective of whether we’re “feelin’ the love,” or are in a difficult season. We choose to wage war against comparing, coveting, and carping. No matter what else is going on, you’ve given us abundant reasons to rejoice and give thanks.

For starters, thank you for writing our names in heaven (Luke 10:20)—for enrolling us in the Book of Life with the indelible ink of your grace (Rev. 3:5). Nothing can separate us from your love, pry us from Jesus’ hand, or revoke our citizenship in heaven. Thank you for loving us to the degree we are in Christ (100%), not to the degree we are like Christ. Hallelujah!

You’ve forgiven every sin we’ll ever commit, clothed us in Jesus’ righteousness, and adopted us as your beloved kids. We live in your permanent favor, constant delight, and unbreakable providence. This is our faith declaration; make it our fresh heart celebration.

Though we don’t always understand your ways, see your hand, or like your timing, we love and trust you. Thank you for being sovereign over our joys and tears, rejoicings and sufferings. Jesus, not death, gets the last word.

Thank you for letting us know some things will only make sense later, for we see dimly and know partially (1 Cor. 13:9). Forgive us when we want answers more than we want you, and when we want pain relief more than we want heart change.

Father, we crave with hope, the Day of wiped tears and redeemed pain, finished stories and zero brokenness. Until that glorious Day, we purpose to remain grateful, kind, and encouraging to others. So very Amen we pray, in Jesus’ beautiful and trustworthy name.