I loved being pregnant with my first baby (the others got a little rougher though so I can’t say the same there! Haha!). It’s great right up until 3 weeks before you have that baby and then all of a sudden, you’re done! D-O-N-E done! But, I’m so thankful…because in the grand scheme of life, it’s a vapor of time.
Here I am with my second baby about 3 weeks before he was born…RIGHT before the “I’m done!” stage!!
For those of you who have been pregnant, or those of you who long to be pregnant, something really weird happens that you’ve probably noticed. Once you’re pregnant, or once that desire creeps up on you and invades every waking moment of your life, all you can see around you is pregnant people. It’s like EVERYONE is pregnant! But…24 hours before, no one was pregnant. What is up with that?!?!?
It’s like the first time I got glasses…all of a sudden, EVERYONE had glasses. Or the first time I drove off in my new car out of college, EVERYONE had my car!!! All of a sudden you notice specific things that had been there all along…but it’s like your eyes have been opened and now you’re actually seeing them for the first time.
That’s how God’s blessings can be.
One day this past fall I was overwhelmed with how beautiful God is. The fall colors were in FULL bloom…everything around me was like seeing a rainbow. If you haven’t been to Portland in the fall, it’s magical. You can literally see every color in the rainbow all around you on a beautiful, clear fall day. I was reminded of how Sovereign and beautiful and good my sweet God is. He wraps me up in beautiful things all the time but sometimes I’m not looking for them. My eyes aren’t open.
But the moment you stop and you LOOK for the blessings, beauty, wonder, power, goodness, mercy and love of God, you all of a sudden start to experience it. Your life becomes full of goodness and wonder and peace settles in to your heart because HE is our Heavenly Father.
I am reminded of Luke 12:26-31: “If then you cannot do even a very little thing, why do you worry about other matters? Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; but I tell you, not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass in the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, how much more will He clothe you? You men of little faith! And do not seek what you will eat and what you will drink, and do not keep worrying. For all these things the nations of the world eagerly seek; but your Father knows that you need these things. But seek His kingdom, and these things will be added to you. Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has chosen gladly to give you the kingdom.”
So, what does it say blinds us to knowing how much God loves us and how much He cherishes us?
When we don’t seek His face and look for His goodness and mercy, we worry. We become overwhelmed. We lose our happy spirits. We lose our peace and joy.
So, what’s the answer?
It comes from Junior Asparagus…”A thankful heart is a happy heart.” Profound truth from a baby asparagus!!
When we start to seek first His kingdom and His grace and His love, that’s all we start to see. We become thankful people and joy fills our hearts and outflows happiness.
So, today, ask yourself what am I looking at?
Philippians 4:8-9: Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.”
1 Thes 5:18 “In everything give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
Give thanks in ALL circumstances…In EVERYTHING!?!?!? But what if “nothing” is going good for me today?!
Oh friend…there is still MUCH to be thankful for. If you can’t find something, then you’re not looking. My pastor says, “At the very least, you can always be thankful that you’re not in hell and someday you’ll be in heaven!” – that’s ONE thing you can be thankful for!! Salvation! He has saved us because He loves us. He tells us to be thankful because He wants us to have joy…joy in the hard times so that HIS light will shine through us. He doesn’t promise this life will be easy, but He does promise He will be with us, He will never leave us, that His plans for us are for our good, that He will bring forth fruit in our lives when we seek Him with our whole heart.
SO many promises…you can be thankful for those!!
I challenge you right now. Take a moment. Open your eyes. Count your blessings. See the beauty He has placed before you and start to be thankful. Don’t allow worry to kill your thankful heart and quench your joy. Seek first His kingdom and all of a sudden you will see beauty that has always been there, but your eyes will be open to it.
A thankful heart is a happy heart. It’s time to be happy!