My heart is stirred by a noble theme as I recite my verses for the king;
my tongue is the pen of a skillful writer. Psalm 45:1
I love holidays and Thanksgiving is one of my favorites. But we parents know that it often has a little too much rushing and not so much quietly reflecting on a long list of things to be grateful for. Real talk - there are many important things to do! Cleaning for the out-of-town guests, the gluten-free, dairy-free, GMO approved treats that need to be baked, and the hand-lettered place cards (to learn how) to make for the table settings. With a to-do list that seems to multiply by the minute, there is little time to stop and ponder what I am even grateful for. While none of us can actually stop time nor can we ignore the to do list. Now is a great time to write a list of prayer notes. Even five minutes of quiet time is a great reminder! (even if you're in a season of feeling less than thankful) Whether you want to deck the halls or run for the hills, perhaps you'll find comfort in the following tips.
My top two tips:
Be still. Spend time with Him, long enough to change your countenance. Make space to listen.
Ask for Step by Step instruction. Ask him what he wants you to do next. Let him know you want his opinion and then, wait and repeat the listen step.
Another helpful tool is a notebook or journal. I like to record prayer requests and date them. You can look back at how God answered your prayers. This will build your belief in prayer. It will also remind you of requests that need more intercession. Then also write answers to your prayers. It is awesome to see chronologically how God answered prayer requests. It is a testimony of God’s goodness. Journals are great to see progress you are making in your spiritual life. It helps me so much to see spiritual progress in my life and how God is working. Also, list what God is saying to you. Ask yourself, “How is God personally revealing Himself to me?” Write out key verses that speak to you during times of prayer. God will guide and help you in important times of decision making by using Scripture.
Prayer journaling will help you to see real growth in your life because you are bringing to God the things that concern you. Through journaling, you will see your life more clearly through God’s eyes. He has so much to say when we give Him time and seek His face. It’s important to write it down and not miss out on the wisdom He wants to share with us.
Gratitude is merely turning our attention to God and saying, “Thank you” for all the good things that He has already done for us— the big stuff, the little things, and everything in between. When we focus our attention on God— giving Him our adoration (our worship and praise), it’s hard to stop. And that’s how it should be at Thanksgiving.
Dear Lord, help me remember what a difference it makes when I make time with You a priority in my morning. Awaken me in body and spirit each day with a desire to meet with You and to hear You speak words of affirmation, assurance and wisdom over my heart as I prepare to go into my day. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
Roberta Smith, Faith and Family Coordinator