Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Sufferings and Gratefulness

Things at our house are not perfect. We're all a bunch of sinners, saved by grace. We struggle with the flesh everyday, sadly sometimes the flesh wins. But we also run to Christ, repent and move forward.

One area that I have a tendency to do is to dwell on the things that are not 'right'. I would love a quiet, happy, peaceful home and family on a daily basis. Overall we are content, abiding in Christ, but there always situations in life that are a thorn. So the thing I need to change is MY way of thinking. Nowhere in Scripture does God tell us that everything will be perfect. We do not deserve to endure nothing but bliss.

Actually, God uses difficult situations to purify us, to make us more like Him. Examine His life here on earth, it was FAR from perfect bliss. So if the Son of God suffered, why do we think we should not? We are suppose to identify with Him through our sufferings. How do we do that? We die to ourselves that demand respect, acknowledgment, restitution, revenge, etc... We ask the Father for grace to respond correctly. By doing this we become more like Christ. The more we strive to respond as Christ would, the more we bring HIM glory. The more we focus on HIM, the more we will experience peace and joy, despite our sufferings.

Thanksgiving is tomorrow, so let our hearts be filled with gratefulness. Cast our cares on Him, focus on the good things we do have, give thanks for the hard times and rest in Him.

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Character Journal is one of my favorite resources for teaching Biblical Character. Here are some points from the Gratefulness category.

Ways to show Gratefulness:

to God

  • List the ways God benefits you
  • Recall God's help during crisis
  • Learn and praise the names of God
  • Choose to thank God when not thankful

to Parents

  • Honour your parents' sacrifices
  • Cherish what your parents taught
  • Sit with your parents in public
  • Choose to dress for your parents
  • Redirect praise to your parents
  • Celebrate parents' special days
  • Give parents a grateful smile
  • Thank parents for correction
  • Find ways to please parents

to your Instructors

  • Praise them for their dedication
  • Thank their family members
  • Praise their high standards
  • to your Civil Authorities
  • Trust God to work through them
  • Thank them for their protection
  • Pray for them and their families

to your Employers

  • Be an energy-giver
  • Focus on your work, not the clock
  • Thank your employer for fringe benefits
  • Look for ways to save him money
  • Purpose to make him successful

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One assignment our family is doing today is to write a short letter/note to people that have truly blessed us this year and express our gratefulness.

1 comment:

Lisa said...

Love the assignment. ;o)

(I prefer quiet waters too!)