November 26, 2014
Does God Feel at Home in Your Heart?
They neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened (Romans 1:21 NIV).
Friend to Friend
I love November and the American tradition of Thanksgiving. But in reality, every day should be Thanksgiving.
Gratitude is the most effective way to deepen your consciousness to the fact that you are the object of God’s affection and love. Giving thanks awakens your senses to see God, to hear God, to taste and see that He is good. When you feel far from God, praise will bring you back. When you have strayed from acknowledging God’s presence, when you have forgotten in him we live and move and have our being, praise and gratitude will be the ramp to get you back on the right road.
I shudder at the words of Romans chapter one. “They neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened” (Romans 1:21 emphasis mine). They did not glorify Him. They did not give thanks to Him. “Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts…” (Romans 1:24). The light of their eyes went dark.
Praise keeps you alert to the glimpses of glory all around. The more you glorify God with praise and thanksgiving, the more your eyes will be opened to the deep well of His love that is but a bowshot away (Genesis 21:19). God inhabits the praises of His people (Psalm 22:3 KJV). He feels right at home in a heart that praises Him. He enjoys being there!
I believe gratitude grows with practice. When you thank God, regardless of your feelings, it primes the pump of your heart until gratitude begins to flow freely.
If this is a language you have not spoken often, you can become fluent…with practice. Paul wrote, “I have learned how to get along happily whether I have much or little. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything” (Philippians 4:11-12 NLT, emphasis mine). “I have learned.”
As with any foreign language we attempt to learn, the more we use it, the more fluent we become. Is it too strong to say that the language of gratitude is a “foreign” tongue? I don’t think so. We come into the world screaming with our very first breath, “It’s all about me and my needs!” With tightly closed fists and squeezed shut eyes we demand attention. A newborn babe can think of nothing more than his wants and his needs: feed me, hold me, change me, nurse me…and do it right now! I would like to think we eventually grow out of that infantile attitude, but I’m sorry to say, many never do.
But we don’t have to live like self-centered, self-absorbed ingrates. We can learn God’s love language of gratitude that opens our eyes and unfurls the fingers. We can speak words of gratitude that remove the blinders to see glimpses of His glory every day. As we discover and practice the beautiful language of gratitude, our native tongue of self-focused dissatisfaction begins to fade.
And we practice. And we practice. And we practice.
Heavenly Father, thank You for all that You have done and continue to do in my life. Forgive me for not being more grateful. Forgive me for grumbling and complaining even about the smallest details of life. Help me to speak praise and gratitude fluently and proficiently.
In Jesus’ name,
Now It’s Your Turn
Being thankful isn’t simply about being thankful to God. It is about a lifestyle of gratitude. Make it a point to tell 10 people “Thank you” today. Then click over to my Facebook page and say, “I did it!” Or “I’ll do it!”
More from the Girlfriends
Do you long to feel close to God but feel like there’s something missing? That you’ve missed that mysterious formula to make it happen? Do you have a glory ache—a persistent longing to experience God’s presence and working in your life, but you’re not quite sure how to make it happen? If so, my book, A Sudden Glory: God’s Lavish Response to Your Ache for Something More, is just for you. Join me in discovering how to erase the lines between the secular and the sacred and experience a deeper, more intimate, relationship with God than ever before. While you’re there, you can download a free chapter or watch a video book trailer.
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Girlfriends in God
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