"Always be rejoicing. Give thanks for everything." 1 Thessalonians 5:16, 18.
Gratitude refers to the ability to show thanks for the things you have and the things you're grateful for. It helps you get closer to God by recognizing all the blessings in your life and makes it easier to focus on the positive. The Bible has plenty to say about gratitude, even when you're faced with struggles and negativity.
Nearly everyone appreciates recognition for a job well done. This is particularly true for family members and friends who are faithful and loyal to others. Showing gratitude and expressing thanks for favors and when someone goes out of their way to listen or help is one of the best ways to improve relationships. Even God showed the importance of gratitude towards his people. "God is not unrighteous so as to forget your work and the love you showed for his name." Hebrews 6:10.
Showing gratitude towards others when they offer help also keeps you from feeling envious, eliminates feelings of resentment and keeps you from feeling entitled.
The Bible is filled with stories of gratitude in the middle of storms. In Psalm 28:6-7 when David was crying out to God to be saved from death, God heard his prayer and answered it, and David showed his gratitude. "Praise be to the Lord, for he has heard my cry for mercy. The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him."
Throughout the Bible, praise and gratitude towards God is the main theme. When you learn to have a thankful heart and to see the best in all situations, you learn to be more positive even in the toughest of situations. It's easy to express gratitude during success and when things are going our way, but it's harder to see the positive during times of failure. It's during these times we need to be more grateful for the lessons learned.
The greatest spiritual gift received from Christ is salvation. Above all, we should be thankful for the forgiveness of sins and eternal life with our savior. "For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life." Romans 5:10.
God continues to provide for us in every situation, even when we can't see the good. We should approach each trial and success with a grateful heart.
The staff at all our Bethesda Senior Living Communities encourages positive interactions between themselves and our residents. Our faith-based approach to senior living and our service-first attitude helps creates a positive atmosphere where you can live and grow spiritually.