Let’s face it… some days are just hard.
Like today. Of course today of all days, I find myself sitting down to write a post about “unique ways of being thankful.” On the inside, I want to do anything BUT be thankful. I want to vent and tell the world that life just isn’t fair sometimes. I want to wallow in self-pity as I race about the house trying to wrangle the hoodlums up, have them look semi-decent, and make it to church without being the very last family entering the building. I want to scream, “Can a girl just get a little extra help sometimes!?!”
But then I am reminded of what I try to teach my children. When you feel like complaining, you just need a little reality check. You need a little dose of the gratitude attitude. You need a little perspective. When you want to pucker your lips and sip on sour lemonade, remember to add a little “sugar” of gratefulness so that you can down that sweet juice and replenish your dry and weary soul.
How do we do this as a family? How do we keep our focus on the things that really matter? How do we sweeten up the sour lemonade our lives can become? We like to play a little game called The Thankful Game! And let me tell you…this game isn’t just for the kids.
Here’s how this little game works. We go around to each member of the family and we have to say something that we are thankful for. Usually, the things we list are pretty obvious, but since nothing can be repeated, as we go round and round again, we have to REALLY start thinking about specific things we are thankful for. The key is declaring over and over again the things we are most thankful for until our attitudes change. I love listening to the littlest members of the family because they usually say things like, “trees” or “sunshine.” How often do we forget to thank God for the littlest things in our lives? Most of the time we take them for granted. You will find that the longer you play, the harder it is to have a bad attitude.
A good dose of gratefulness can cure an awful lot of bah-humbugs and self-pity. When you take the focus off of yourself and put it onto what God has done in your life, you can’t help but smile. So if you need to turn your day around, maybe give this little game a try. It’s hard to be grumpy when you have a mind and heart full of thankfulness!
Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 (ESV)
How do you turn bad attitudes into gratitude in your family?