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Welcome to Season 1 Episode 23 of the Your Church Matters podcast. In this episode, I talked about Intentional Thankfulness (inspired by a podcast a few months back from Ray Edwards).
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“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7)
Key words: “with thanksgiving”
5 Benefits of Intentional Thankfulness
1 – Refocuses on what you have rather than what you lack.
2 – Reminds you that everything you have is a gift of God’s grace. Even if you worked hard for it, the ability to work hard is a gift from God.
3 – Reframes temporary difficulties in light of eternal realities. “For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” (2 Corinthians 4:17-18)
4 – Makes you more pleasant to be around. Misery loves company, but company does not love misery.
5 – Elevates those around you. Thankfulness is contagious.
5 for 5 Thankfulness Challenge – for the next 5 days, in your personal time with God, write down 5 things that you are thankful for. No repeating allowed, so at the end of 5 days you will have a list of 25.
Framework: If you already have a daily personal time with God, incorporate this challenge. If you don’t have that daily habit, use this challenge to give you a jump start (find a quiet private place, ask God to show you how he has blessed you, write down the first 5 things that come to mind, thank Him out loud for each one, ask God to bring those things to your mind throughout the day, thank him every time you think of them. Repeat the process each day for 5 days.
Suggestions:High achievers with driven personalities may have a hard time stopping with 5. Discipline yourself to intentionally focus on only 5 per day. Some may be tempted to make a long list and try to do cram it all into one day. Discipline yourself to focus for 5 days straight. The list is not the goal. The process is not even the goal. The list and process are tools to help us develop habits that result in our becoming intentionally thankful people.
One more suggestion: – Choose 1 day out of the 5 to focus on 5 things about your church you are thankful for.
2 Requests if you will join me in this challenge:
1. Go to show notes drgerrylewis.com/023 (this page) and share a link to the page on the social media outlets of your choice. Along with your share, put the words “I’m taking the challenge.”
2. At the end of your 5 day challenge, go back to drgerrylewis.com/023 and leave a comment on the page about what effect the challenge had on your life.
To comment on this episode or leave a question for a future episode:
1. Comment section below
2. Email: email@example.com
3. Voicemail: 817-929-0643
4. Direct tweet @drgerrylewis
*Special thanks to Keith Cooper (Guitar Music)