During November some of my friends on the social-networking site Facebook are taking part in "30 days of thankfulness," where each day they list things for which they are grateful.
What a wonderful thing to do in the days leading up to Thanksgiving! I, for one, am sometimes guilty of focusing more on what I want or lack rather than on counting my blessings. November is the perfect time to recall that, "In all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus." (1 Thessalonians 5:18)
I have a long commute to work, so drive time is prayer time for me. I pray for my needs and for the needs of others; I ask God to comfort the grieving and to heal the sick; and I ask for guidance as I travel along the path in life he has chosen for me.
But I am sorely lacking in the "giving thanks to God" department. I realized this a couple weeks ago when my children learned about the parable of the persistent widow during their faith-formation class. They learned that it is important "to pray always without becoming weary" (Luke 18:1) and that asking God repeatedly for the things we want and need helps us to clarify what is really important to ask of him.
This reminded me how bountiful and repetitive are my prayers of wanting and needing, and how woefully sparse are my prayers of praise and thanksgiving. God does so much for me, and it’s about time some of my repeated supplications include heartfelt words of praise and thankfulness without asking for anything. "Give thanks to the Lord for he is good, his mercy endures forever!" (Psalms 107:1)
What are some of the things for which you are thankful?