How can you stay grateful during hard times? Having a grateful heart gives us access to God’s goodness while an ungrateful heart hinders us from receiving God’s blessings.
There have been times in my life that I battled ungratefulness and recently God started revealing some of the attitudes and traits that hinder us from being grateful
In the New Testament, whenever Paul encouraged Christians like us to give thanks, it wasn’t because of anything God had given them in the natural.
Speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christephesians 5:19-20
This is because anyone can thank God when good things are happening around them, when they can tag God’s faithfulness because of what he did in the physical.
But could the evidence of God’s goodness in a Christian’s life be measured by what unbelievers also have, even in abundance?
Now I’m not eliminating the fact that we should give thanks even when God blesses us with natural things or even things that we might have prayed for or hoped for.
But the true test of our gratefulness is tested when things don’t turn out the way we envisioned it would.
When the storms threaten our joy and peace, we can stay grateful for how God is God and our heart can soar with praise;
We can also remember that all things are working together for our good despite the odds.
I realized that it takes God’s grace to do this. A normal person is unable to do this so God has to give us the grace and strength to come into this maturity as we keep walking with him.
But first, we must tackle the hidden roots responsible for ungratefulness in our lives.
Eliminate every entitlement mentality
An entitled person believes the world exists for them and everyone around is present to do their beck and call.
But that’s not true.
We live in a crazy world and people are going through a lot. If someone calls you or texts to check up on you, don’t despise it, thank them and bless them.
What if they chose not to? But they did because they care about you.
Don’t take it for granted.
Maybe you feel you should have been earning more by now but you’re not. But you’re earning something and you can feed from it.
What if you weren’t? What if you didn’t get that job? God provided. Learn to be grateful for the little things and you won’t battle covetousness.
A grateful heart is a meek heart and it can never go wrong. A grateful heart gets so much from God because even in the midst of little, he sees God’s abundance.
Such a heart is intentional about each day and can see the beauty in everything around them. David lived an exemplary life, always giving thanks.
No wonder his spirit soared.
It’s the reason why some would argue endlessly about tithes and offerings. Now I’m not here to bicker about that. You do what you want to do with your money, it’s not my business.
I know enough to believe in giving to God and sowing seeds. But if we keep seeing the money we earned as ‘our money’ because we worked with our brain and hands, then we miss the point of working in the first place.
As Christians, God is our motivating factor. And wherever we find ourselves, we work like we are serving Him.
For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.matthew 6:21
Some people don’t have that opportunity to work due to some disadvantages. It’s not because God loves you more than those people. Life happens to different people.
So the moment we understand that our being able to live and think properly is by God’s grace, we would grumble less and give thanks more.
Stop wallowing in rejection
It’s easy to wallow in rejection when things don’t go our way.
Statements like, “If only so so had given me the promotion I deserved, I would have been a top Manager by now.”
“Oh if only my past relationships had worked, I would be married with kids by now.” And so many ‘what ifs
Trust me, if that promotion was that important, God would make sure of it. Your mistakes aren’t enough to hold him down from promoting you as he sees fit.
Perhaps you made mistakes in your past? Well, everyone makes mistakes so move on and do better next time.
Be grateful that you got the chance to even see your mistakes so you can work on your shortcomings.
Your old relationship failed? Well, the guy or girl was probably not for you.
Don’t let rejection eat you up while you wallow in thoughts of what if.
You’re never alone if you’re with God.
Would you rather do a beautiful life with God or suffer and smile in a failed marriage? I guess not.
It’s hard to be grateful when we see our shortcomings and the ‘good’ things we think might have happened to us if only we weren’t too slow or took advantage of some opportunities.
But we rest assured in God’s faithfulness. He sees us. He knows what we’ve gone through and we can still give thanks that if he is for us, nothing can be against us.
Choose contentment in all things
Have you ever felt cheated before? That’s what discontentment does to us. It makes us feel like life cheated us. Or we are being cheated and forgotten by God intentionally.
But that’s just a wrong mindset. Why would God want to cheat you? What does he gain from doing such? It doesn’t make him God.
He’s God all by himself and all He just wants to do is help you.
So if you’re in a season which you are desperate to leave, incline your heart to give him praise. Thank him from within. Use the situation to cultivate a grateful heart.
God would never give you more than what you can handle, so if he’s allowing some things, it’s because he wants to build you.
Don’t waste it. Don’t despise it.
You’d never appreciate Joy if you never experienced pain. neither would we appreciate love if we haven’t experienced neglect, hate, and disappointment.
Without failure, we’d never appreciate success. I once had an accident that had me in the hospital. For weeks, one of my legs was wrapped in Plaster of Paris and was dependent on my family for many things.
I could hardly do anything as an invalid.
I stayed home alone during crossover night when my family left for church. And at that moment, I learned something I might not have learned if the accident never happened.
Weeks after my recovery, it felt good to walk around again without crutches.
The accident made me grateful for my legs or my hands or even my eyes. Little things I might have ignored in the past.
I hope reading this would help us cultivate a grateful heart. As Christ is being formed in us, we would get better at it and be intentional about it. You could also keep a Grateful journal to remind you of God’s goodness when you’re feeling low.
Click here to DOWNLOAD your free gratitude checklist to help you stay grateful in hard times.
Bloom with love. Xx!