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This post is two days late. Why? Because it’s fall. Fall is when the pace of my own life becomes frantic. The rhythm of my ministry picks up during this season as we continue with the normal activity of the year and add on preparation for 2018. Basketball season begins which means coaching multiple practices and games each week. I’ve got projects going at the house which require my time. And I’m still a husband and father. My life is busy - as is yours.
If you’ve been on this journey throughout the year of practicing spiritual disciplines, you may have noticed that one commonality among all these disciplines is that they combat busyness. The disciplines invite us to slow down, make room for God, and be instead of do. It’s not easy. That’s why it’s called “practice.”
On November 1, I was in Kroger picking up a few things I needed for our Wednesday night gathering. Walking by the Coca-cola I realized I was singing along with the ambient music in the store: “...and the children say he could laugh and play just the same as you and me…”
I froze. My halloween candy hangover had not quite subsided and now I was subconsciously singing along to Frosty the Snowman. How was this possible? We had skipped right over Thanksgiving and Advent and landed square in a secular Christmas wonderland.
So, I invite us both to pause for a moment, gather our perspective on life, and prepare to practice the spiritual discipline of gratitude.
Practicing a life of gratitude goes beyond counting your many blessings or offering thanks over a warm turkey dinner on a Thursday in November. It is a way of seeing the world. Having gratitude changes one’s posture toward others and creation. Humility increases as we grow to see how we are dependent on God’s graciousness and the help, compassion, and encouragement of others.
So what are some ways you can practice gratitude?
As you begin to intentionally practice being a person filled with gratitude, you may notice that you become constantly overwhelmed with gratitude. This position is a great source from which to live a full, abundant life. Be thankful in all things. Especially in the toasted marshmallows on top of the sweet potatoes.