So, while we are commanded over 200 times NOT to fear, we are also commanded hundreds of times to be GRATEFUL and give thanks.
- God is looking out for us.
- He wants us to be happy.
- He designed us to thrive.
Those who know me know that my conversation and prayers are filled with GRATITUDE. Being GRATEFUL, however, does not come naturally. I come from a long line of self-pitying, critical complainers. Ingratitude is my first nature.
For forty years, I have worked diligently to cultivate an attitude of GRATITUDE. Now it is habitual. My second nature. I have practiced gratitude, not because God commands me to, but rather, as a defense against bi-polar brain problems.
For much of my adult life, I have suffered from major clinical depression. Among all the other bad things related to serious depression, is the way it so thoroughly undermines an attitude of GRATITUDE.
I have an additional problem. I wrote the best selling Christian book on healing. I have prayed for thousands of people over the past 30 years, and many were healed. My first nature wants to rhuminate on that disconnect.
- I know God heals.
- I've seen it.
- Why then, are prayers for healing ineffective for me?
No one knows.
Since prayer doesn't work and doctors haven't helped, I focus like a laser on all the good in my life:
a good marriage, nine powerful, interesting, loving children, work I love, friends to support me, even a friend who fixes my cars. I'm on airplanes a lot and not one of them has crashed.
I live in San Diego...
When I look closely, there is so much to be GRATEFUL for.
I'm even GRATEFUL to pay bills. When I do it, S.D. Gas and Electric bring electricity to our house and trash collectors get rid of our trash.
I'm GRATEFUL for the farmers, harvesters, and truckers who get our food to us and I thank God for the money to buy it. Because I've spent so much time in the underdeveloped world, I'm GRATEFUL we have food at all.
And how about limitless, clean, running water?
Practicing GRATITUDE in a thoughtful way makes being mad at God for what He hasn't done more difficult. It also undermines the fear and sadness agenda.
No one's life is what it should be. We all have pain to live through.
Therefore, "Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving."
He's looking out for us.