Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. (Ephesians 5:20, ESV)

I know that Thanksgiving (the holiday) is past for this year, but thanksgiving (the attitude) should still be part of every day. I woke today with the word thankful on my mind and praise in my heart. Does that mean my day has been perfect? Not at all. As I write this, I’m sitting in a chilly house waiting for a repairman to fix my suddenly temperamental furnace. I can choose to focus on what I don’t have (heat) or what I do have (a house). As Epictetus said, “He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.” I have the choice of feeling unhappy and cold or thankful and cold. In either case, I’m cold, but I choose thankfulness.

This year has not been what everyone hoped or expected. Things have happened in the past several months that will have a long-term effect on many—health, finances, relationships, and more. Yet, that does not give us the right to grumble and complain. There is also much to give thanks for, even during difficult times.

If you have ever purchased a home, you probably did something called a walk through. Just before the final papers are signed, the buyer walks through the property one more time to see if agreed upon repairs have been made and that no new issues have cropped up. It allows you to see you are getting what was promised.

What if we did another type of walk through, a gratitude walk through. It doesn’t look for what’s wrong, but what’s right.

Let’s start our walk in the kitchen and thank God for food in the pantry, clean water, electricity. In the living room, remember the good times of fellowship enjoyed with friends and family. Walking room to room, we see a comfortable bed, our Bible, shoes, a warm coat, a computer. Outside is a car to take us wherever we need to go. These are only a few of the things we use daily and often take for granted. They are so common that we may forget how blessed we are to have them.

God deserves our thanks every day for all He has given us. For the commonplace as well as the exceptional because “blessed be the Lord, Who daily loads us with benefits” (Psalm 68: 19, NKJV).

Lord, You bless me daily and abundantly. Although I can never repay You for all You do for me, I will offer my thanks and my praise for Your goodness to me.

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Mary enjoys traveling, meeting new people, and spending time with old friends. Although directionally challenged, she would rather take the back roads with their discoveries than the boredom of the interstate.

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