«In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you» (1 Thessalonians 5:18).
A WHILE AGO, when I went shopping at the store, I got a pleasant surprise. A little boy and his mother were chatting down the aisle. The little boy spoke very loudly, so I could hear perfectly what he said, «Mommy, thank you for so many delicious things that you’re buying for me, for my brothers, and for my dad.» Surprised, I went a little ahead to see his face and when he saw me, he waved his small hand in a goodbye gesture. I left the store and his words were still ringing in my ears on my way home. I asked myself: Where does his gratitude come from? I deduced that from his home, out of the lips of his parents he had heard and learned to say «thank you.»
Gratitude awakens feelings that give us a sense of well-being. We live in a society that believes it deserves everything: children demand material goods from their parents without even realizing the sacrifice involved; husbands receive attention from their wives assuming that they are only doing their duty; many wives think that the money their husbands bring home is the least they can do. The words «thank you» are rarely heard. The Lord says, «Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever» (Psalm 118: l).
Gratitude isn’t, as many think, to pay for a favor received; it’s an attitude born from the heart; it’s an internal disposition that we project externally. The grateful person rejoices in the good things received from God, such as health, life, well-being, or friendship. Dear friend it would be good to thank God at sunrise and at the end of the day, remembering everything you have received from Him and from the people who live with you.
Gratitude is a value that must be «sowed» little by little in the hearts of children and young people. It’s a habit that we need to cultivate. As author Joyce Meyer says, «Gratitude keeps the devil away, but when we complain, he arrives again to stay.» To develop gratitude:
Acknowledge what God does for you every day.
Acknowledge what others do for you every day.
Show your gratitude through meaningful words and actions.