Religion Column

Stop and be thankful

By Keri Hill | Oct 18, 2016

I love a good quote. I love to use them in text messages for encouragement and post them in cute little phrases on my Facebook account. I can use quotes from movies, from Scripture, from my own childhood.

If you’ve read this column any number of times, you’ll have noticed that I especially like to use song lyrics to make a point. So it wasn’t very surprising to me the other day when my “Memories” app on my phone reminded me of one of my favorite quotes. It very simply said, “What if you woke up today with only the things you thanked God for yesterday?”

Folks, this quote is what I call a showstopper. It truly made me pause for a few minutes and think about what I had been thankful for the day before.

I certainly hadn’t been thankful for the driver in front of me going super slow. I for sure hadn’t been thankful for the early morning alarm. Without a doubt, I had been irritated about the overwhelming number of flyers in my mailbox slamming political opponents.

In fact, the more I thought about it, the more I realized that I hadn’t been very thankful for anything the day before. I had gone through the day without paying to much attention to all the good around me, and way too much attention to all of the negative.

Psalm 98:5-6 (New Living Translation) says this: “Sing your praise to the Lord with the harp, with the harp and melodious song, with trumpets and the sound of the ram’s horn. Make a joyful symphony before the Lord, the King.”

It was becoming quite clear to me as I sat there with my phone in my hand that I needed to step back and evaluate my attitude for the day. Instead of being mad at the slow driver, I should have been thankful for the opportunity to slow down and enjoy the beauty of fall that is unfolding all around us.

That early morning alarm allowed me a chance to arise for a new day, a day that certainly isn’t promised to me. As for the flyers? Well I can always use them for fire starter, right?

I wish I could tell you that I have applied this eye-opening quote to my life every day since, but that would be a lie. What I can tell you is that God gives us a multitude of blessings every day, if we only take the time to look for them.

It’s easy to get caught up in the negativity of this life, but it’s far more rewarding to take that extra time to be thankful for what we are given.

“Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.” James 1:17