**In searching for this graphic, I found out something very cool about this verse. It's listed word for word in the Bible several times. 1 Chronicles 16:34, 2 Chronicles 20:21, Psalms 106:1, 107:1, 118:1, 118:29, 136:1 and Jeremiah 33:11. That's EIGHT times. Wow!
I'm sure you've all seen the barrage of "thankful" posts on Facebook. The ones where, for the 30 days of November, people post what they're thankful for. This is a great practice, ... that completely bugs the crap out of me. Maybe to me it feels like bragging? That I'm so bah-humbug I don't want to hear about all the good crap in someone else's life? That I'm not very thankful? Or maybe that I think people should do it in private? All year long? I'm not sure exactly what about it bothers me. I've thought about it. It's probably all that stuff. And I'm sure it points out a blemish on my own heart.
You can probably imagine my delight when reading through my lovely little devotional this month, each day - again - focusing on being thankful. I've been having to put in a MUCH more concerted effort to concentrate and get through these two little paragraphs. But I'm persevering. Sometimes.
Strangely, *cough cough*, it's a lot easier for me to recognize these things in someone else, the Negative Norman's and Nelly's, than in myself. sigh. I guess the self-improvement continues. :) Haha! Yeah, totally joking. The self-improvement will go on for f.o.r.e.v.e.r over here. (and I'm totally ok with that. I think.)
So when I read this little passage, I instantly thought of someone (or two) I know. After reading it about 12 more times, I think, it "could" be for me to consider and apply, too. ahem.
A constant focus on adversity defeats (you). (You) walk through days brimming with beauty and brightness seeing only the grayness of (your) thoughts. Neglecting the practice of giving thanks has darkened (your) mind. ~Sarah Young**
Let me repeat that: A constant focus on adversity defeats you. Hm. Ok. Yeah. I can see that. In me? Oh.... well. Yeah, I guess. "Your day is brimming with good stuff but you focus only on the bad." Pshhh. I don't feel defeated. Oh, wait. Yeah I do. gulp.
I was talking on the phone today, grumbling, about how people want to rush into Christmas and almost rush right over Thanksgiving, with the sales, putting up the tree, yadda yadda. Why can't they focus on the good of this season? On being thankful, on being with family, on extending a generous hand or invitation, on eating good food and relaxing?
Wait. Did "I" just say that? Why can't "they" focus???
I have a lot to be thankful for. Healthy, happy children, a loving, hardworking husband, a warm home, cars to drive, safety and protection, a cat I like even if he does pee on everyone's shoes (shhhhh. don't tell the hubs.) and money to pay the bills and cover all our needs. I have great parents, brothers I have grown to love as adults in ways I never thought possible as a child, great friends, a community of fellow believer people - friends - who send me cards of encouragement **IN THE MAIL** when I have down days. Lots. to. be. thankful. for. I guess my speech needs to reflect that. My children need to hear my speech reflect that. I.... I need to hear my speech reflect that. And I need my dismal, critical, down in the dumps outlook to take a back seat.
Amen to that! ^^^
And a big thanks to those friends of mine who "let me" to see not only the speck in their eye, but the log in my own. ;)
**Jesus Calling, November 26, please pardon my "alterations".