Recently, I was talking with a young man who expressed his desire to be more thankful to God. In fact, he was honest enough to admit that he set a timer while praying. This way he could make sure he spent at least one minute thanking God for His blessings before he began making requests. The young man also confessed that he originally tried setting the timer for five minutes, but it was just too hard for him.
Can you relate? I think many of us can. We are quick to ask God for things we need and yet slow to say thanks for His gifts. Here are some suggestions that can help us train ourselves to express our thanks to God more often:
• Follow the example of my friend and set aside some of your prayer time just for thanksgiving and nothing else.
• Before eating, say thanks to God for the food and other blessings, but don’t ask Him for anything. Take the time to think of things He has blessed you with and give Him thanks. You can always ask God for things in another prayer after the meal is over (which is also a good habit).
• Read a Psalm of thanksgiving, like Psalm 100, and make it your own prayer by praying over each verse.
• Try singing! Even if you are alone it is wonderful to sing a song to God as an act of worship and thanksgiving.
Let’s cultivate a spirit of thankfulness in our hearts. It is the right thing for a Christian to do, because we have so much to be thankful for.