As we enter into the fall season, many people shift their focus on the concept of gratitude. Gratitude is a concept you hear about often within the walls of charitable giving. It is a buzz word that people throw out within the Thanksgiving time frame. But what does it actually mean? Gratitude is a spiritual principle, in all reality. Though not listed in fruits of the spirit, it is similar in vein. Gratitude comes with practice and is an active choice in perspective, as is love, joy, or peace.
The world seems to be lacking in the true practice of gratitude. It's not a seasonal practice as the world would have you believe. It is a daily practice that we should try and imbue our lives with. Gratitude is seen all over the early Christian passages, but is most notably seen in the passage of Mark 6.
In this passage, Jesus is leading his friends in a sermon. The people listening get hungry and started asking when they could eat. Jesus gathers some food, and the people start complaining that it is not enough for the whole crowd to be fed. Without even batting an eyelash, Jesus looks up to Heaven and gives thanks for the food that he was able to gather. Whenever he does this, the people see the importance of practicing gratitude. As it is a habit Jesus practiced and modeled, it should be one we practice as well.
Noticing the good and what deserves thanks takes practice. As humans, we often choose to see the negative, as it is frequently in our faces. But, when we take a moment to look for the good, it will easily come to us.
As you go about your fall, take five minutes each day and see for yourself if you can cultivate a thankful heart.