November 21, 2023
In Sunday’s worship services, I mentioned how I planned to offer a few more thoughts on gratitude in my Etchings, specifically gratitude practices. It’s interesting to me how we use the word “practice” in describing this. The need for practice assumes that a skill set is not yet at its best. When it comes to the idea of living a life of gratitude, I am guessing a high percentage of us could not honestly say, “I have hit perfection.” If you’re like me, there are days when I need to return to the elementary school of thankfulness. It’s not that I am against appreciation, but there are times when the to-do list is long and saying “thank you” does not squeeze onto the list. Maybe you know what I mean. It’s not a lack of gratitude, but an issue on how we rank gratitude in our daily lives. So let me make a suggestion that gratitude should not be an afterthought or prioritized after everything else gets done. The Apostle Paul writes about being filled with the Spirit and the importance of “giving thanks to God the Father at all times and for everything in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Ephesians 5:20). Does “all times” and “everything” give you reason for concern? It does for me. But as I reflect a little more, I see gratitude aligning with everything we do. It’s not an afterthought or something that we find time for after everything else is done. It’s a practice that weaves itself into and through everything we do. Whatever it is that you value is not in competition with gratitude but is enjoyed and understood in a more healthy way through gratitude.
Provide me not only time, O Lord, for some practice, but a bit of a nudge to actually do something that could be described as actually practicing. Amen.
Rev. Bruce Frogge