Gratitude can be the beginning of turning your life around

Gratitude is a revolutionary way of looking at your world.

Gratitude is, without question, one of the secrets to a happy life. Without it, you feel caught in a draining, neverending struggle.

When you're in that struggle, you see everything in shades of black and gray. Troubles seem to pile up. Your life becomes something to endure, rather than enjoy.

If you're single, gratitude can make all the difference in the world. It doesn't always change the situation, but if you start to change how you perceive things, it won't be long before you grasp the truth that you do have the power to turn your life around.

"But I don't have anything to be grateful for," you may say. "My life stinks, and if you were me, you wouldn't be so happy either."

Gratitude is the domain of the tough-minded

Let's be blunt. Gratitude is not for wimps. Cultivating this attitude takes work. You have to be strong to be grateful, especially when things seem to be going against you.

It takes a strong-willed person to stare problems in the face and say, "It's not over. Better times are ahead. I'm going to find something to be grateful for, and I'm going to hang onto it no matter what."

Many years ago, when I was taking cobalt radiation treatments for cancer, I was emaciated, weak, and vomiting every day. It was one of the worst times of my life. But you know what I managed to be grateful for? God's love.

Jack's truths for thriving.

    If you're a believer, you can always be grateful
    for God's love and protection.
If you doubt God's protection during hard times, the problem is in how you're interpreting things, not with God. Yes, bad things certainly do happen to good people, but Christ said, "Surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age."

He's there. We may not feel it, but he is there. We rely on his truthfulness, not our feelings.

Finding things to be grateful for

Okay, so if being appreciate makes such a difference, how do we cultivate it? How do we find things to be grateful for?

Let's look closer.

  • Have a place to sleep tonight? Many people don't.

  • Have food? Many people don't.

  • Have your eyesight? Many people don't.

Those are major things, but if we take a bit of time, we can find many small things that each of us can be happy for, from a hobby or activity we love, to at least one good friend, to a job that pays the bills, to the simple freedoms we all take for granted every day.

Thankfulness comes not from comparing ourselves to people who have more, but to people who have less.

The hidden value of gratitude

When you start feeling thankful for things, it has a remarkable effect on you. It gives you hope. It helps you recognize that God is for you, and boy, when you realize that, you get a sense of empowerment you can't find anywhere else.

The being who created and rules this universe is for me?

You'll start to feel a new confidence, from the surprising force of God's love flowing through you. You have hope. You have a future. The present isn't as bad as you first thought, because God is for you. Wow!

And all that gets started when you begin to express gratitude?

It's true.

But the best way to find out is to try it for yourself!

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