3 Reasons to Give Gratitude to God Every Single Day
- Aaron D'Anthony Brown Contributing Author
- 2021 6 Aug
“What do you say?” I ask the child after I hand her a treat. “Thank you,” she replies, eyes locked onto the cookie now in her hands. Will she remember to give thanks next time? Maybe. After years of working with children, I lost count of how many times I repeated that line, sometimes more than once for those hard of hearing. As much as I enjoy children, they remind me of an important truth - gratitude is not innate. Not for them. Not for me. Just as a parent teaches a child to be more grateful, so too does God teach me. Daily lessons and reminders that what I have in life is not guaranteed.
Yet, how often do I wake up day to day and take things for granted? I expect to wake up, to open my eyes, to walk, to work, to eat, and to do all that over again. Not only do I hold these expectations, but with plenty of complaints too.
There’s a certain ease to complaining. The news reminds me of what’s wrong in the world. I complain about what’s wrong in my life. People tell me what’s wrong in theirs. In a fallen world there’s plenty of imperfection to spot (Romans 3:23). Not only that, complaining requires no solution on my part, nor a bunch of energy or effort. All I have to do is feel a certain way (not think) and voice my emotions. Complaining seems as natural as living.
However, complaining has a fatal flaw - minimizing the impact of everything and everyone good, especially God. If all we do is complain we stop enjoying life. And a life without enjoyment is not a life anyone wants to live.
When we choose gratitude in our daily lives, we pay homage to God. We exalt him for all He has done at our request and all that He has done without being asked. The issue is that gratitude requires effort and intent. We have to notice the good thing in order to offer acknowledgment. But in a fallen world, seeing the bad is far easier than the good.
When considering God, seeing what He has not given is far easier than acknowledging what He has offered.
I can’t be too hard on my kiddos because as I have asked them, surely God has wondered about me, “What do you say?” What will I say next time I recognize God’s blessing? Or what will I say even if I don’t? There are two words I ought to utter every day throughout the day. If only there were 3 daily reasons for gratitude to God… oh, wait! There are three reasons, at least!
1. Each Day Brings Blessings
“Because of the Lord’s faithful love we do not perish, for his mercies never end. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness! (Lamentations 3:22-23)
The reason we are able to see another day is because of the Lord’s mercy. His mercy is the reason we are forgiven, the reason we have blessings instead of all the consequences brought about by sin (James 1:15).
When we wake up to see the sun, or smell coffee, or hear the birds chirp, we can thank God for that. Each day is a gift.
As each day is a gift, each day is meant to be appreciated and lived in full. Jesus admonished His followers, reminding them that each day is to be embraced. By recognizing each day fully, we can let go of past regrets and future anxieties.
Each day does have its own troubles, but each day has its own blessings too. There are certain days where we get to celebrate birthdays, holidays, graduations, weddings. Each of those is a reason for enjoying the day. We are blessed with being able to see or talk to our family, friends, acquaintances, even strangers.
Days when we can wake up and relax all day, or work all day, are also a blessing. What we believers must realize is that every small and every big part of our day is a blessing (Romans 8:28). Each day is a blessing and everything we experience in the day is a blessing. Each day we live is a sign that the Lord continues to give us life.
2. Each Day Brings Opportunities to Serve
“Just as each one has received a gift, use it to serve others, as good stewards of the varied grace of God.” (1 Peter 4:10)
Being a Christian is less about living life for self and much more about living life for others - God and other people. With each day bringing blessings in various forms, one blessing is the ability to serve. Jesus outlined the two greatest commandments for us in the Book of Matthew (Matthew 22:34-40). From these commandments we are able to understand our reasoning for serving others.
Thus, with each day the Lord grants, comes another opportunity to fulfill both commandments. By adhering to God’s word, we live life in the way that He desires. And as we do that, God in turn blesses His people.
3. Each Day Brings Us Closer to Salvation
“Therefore we do not give up. Even though our outer person is being destroyed, our inner person is being renewed day by day.” (2 Corinthians 4:16)
When we make the choice to follow Jesus, we decide whether to affirm that choice every day. God grants us the day, the blessings in the day, and we can use all of that to become more like Jesus. Every day is an opportunity to choose right, to repent, to seek God more fervently than the day before.
Certainly, some seasons of life will be easier, some harder, but if we look at the bigger picture, every day that passes means we are closer to our moment of passing - our moment of God’s salvation.
Since salvation is available to God’s children, mortality is not something to be afraid of, nor rushed, but something to accept when the time has come. After we die, there is something even greater awaiting us. That is exciting news, and plenty of reason for gratitude.
Give Daily Thanks to God
Considering all that the Bible says about gratitude, what unique blessings do we see in our own lives? One truth that I see is God has blessed me in ways that I have asked, but He has mostly blessed me in ways that I have not, ways that I don’t even think to pray about because He has me covered.
He has blessed me with books to read, food to eat, plenty of work, and a lot of music to enjoy.
I’m not unique in reaping these benefits of God’s love. We all receive our own blessings, big or small, hidden or seen. The question is can we appreciate the blessings? And if we do, can we offer up praise? The answer should be yes, and the yes should come daily.
Whether we ask God for financial stability, good health, a spouse, or wisdom, we can count on Him when we need Him most, and when we pretend like we don’t need Him at all. He truly is great every day.
Related: Listen to our FREE prayer podcast, Teach Us to Pray with Christina Patterson. You can find all the episodes at LifeAudio.com. Here's Episode 1:
Photo Credit: ©GettyImages/dmbaker
Aaron D'Anthony Brown is a freelance writer, hip-hop dance teacher, and visual artist, living in Virginia. He currently contributes work to iBelieve, Crosswalk, and supports various clients through the platform Upwork. He's an outside-the-box thinker with a penchant for challenging the status quo. Check out his short story “Serenity.”