Sunday, April 25, 2021

Benefits of Practicing Gratitude

(Jax, Josh and Nicole's cat)

Be thankful.

In this stormy season, I find many things to thank God for. I find myself, sometimes unconsciously, whispering "Thank you Jesus" as I move through the day. This is becoming more and more common. It is increasing in me. The pandemic has not changed this.

Thankfulness, from the heart, is pleasing to God. In his pleasure, God adds benefits to our thankfulness. In his beautiful, healing, helpful book Finding Quiet, J. P. Moreland writes:

Here are some of the benefits of the regular practice of gratitude:

 • increased feelings of energy, alertness, enthusiasm, and vigor 
• success in achieving personal goals 
• better coping with stress 
• a sense of closure in traumatic memories 
• bolstered feelings of self-worth and self-confidence
• solidified and secure social relationships 
• generosity and helpfulness 
• prolonging of the enjoyment produced by pleasurable experiences 
• improved cardiac health through increases in vagal tone 
• greater sense of purpose and resilience (pp. 112-113)

A thankful heart produces so many benefits one could think God intended us to live thankfully.

“For everything God created is good, 
and nothing is to be rejected 
if it is received with thanksgiving” (1 Timothy 4:4). 

“Let us come before him with thanksgiving 
and extol him with music and song” (Psalm 95:2).