9. Make Prayer with Thankfulness a Habit
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Philippians 4:4 instructs us to always be full of joy, but verse 6 tells us how to accomplish it. The key is to spend time thanking God for his past, present, and future provision.
We can easily recall instances in our lives when we know without a doubt it was God who met our need. If we pay attention, we can notice His working in our current circumstances and thank him.
But what about thanking the Lord for doing what we can’t see ahead of us? We can take our cue from David, who wrote many of the Psalms. His usual pattern was to tell God exactly how he felt, what he feared, or what was wrong.
Then he thanked God in advance for his power over whatever the situation was, and resolving it for David. Things might have looked desperate for David, but he believed God would come through—and God always did. A thankful heart is a joyful heart.
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done." Philippians 4:6
10. Remember that God Finds Joy in You
Over and over in the Bible we read that God made us, planned for us, desires a relationship with us, and loves us.
Have you ever created something? Maybe you quilt and just finished a beautiful wall-hanging or bedspread. Or maybe you design and carve objects from wood or metal. Perhaps you’re a painter, photographer, interior designer, or musical composer.
Regardless of your medium, don’t you feel a great sense of accomplishment and pride when the finishing touch goes on your most recent masterpiece? Does it fill you with joy to stand back and stare at your magnificent project?
This is exactly—times about a gazillion—the way God feels about you. He even sings over you! Rest assured that you, the source of his joy, will be protected and sheltered. You might not feel it, but the Lord is watching over you. Let his joy permeate your day today.
“May the glory of the Lord continue forever! The Lord takes pleasure in all He has made." Psalm 104:31
Joy is not some hypothetical, fluttery feeling. It is an imperative. It’s also a solid foundation we can build our lives upon so that we are able to withstand whatever we face. All we need to do is turn to the Lord and ask him to help us find it—and then be sure to thank him when it floods our souls.
Photo Credit: ©Milada Vigerova/Unsplash
Kathryn Graves, author of Woven: Discovering Your Beautiful Tapestry of Confidence, Rest, and Focus, and Fashioned by God, holds a BA in Psychology, is a pastor’s wife and Bible teacher, and spent 15 years in the fashion industry. Kathryn is Mimi to four grandsons, and loves to play with color—including interior design, clothing, and painting with pastels. In addition to her website, find her on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.