Grateful and Faithful

Our small group is reading through the book “Crazy Love”. It is a surprisingly difficult book to go through. Our ladies are dealing with it in predictably different ways. I have been dealing with almost denial. How do I deal with these feelings of inadequacy? Recently the ladies decided to do a day when we would all act biblically. I hadn’t read the chapter yet, so I figured, okay, I can do that. When I finished reading the chapter I still had no idea what was meant by “acting biblically”.I asked my daughter about it and she came back with this: What I have been doing recently is trying to be grateful and trying to be faithful in the small things. Uh, oh. Right away I remembered that verse that comes before one of my favorite scriptures. Philippians 4 has those verses about rejoicing and being thankful. Aw. Do I have to?I looked up the meaning of the word grateful: 1. warmly or deeply appreciative of kindness or benefits received; thankful: I am grateful to you for your help.Really. Ok, so to be grateful, I need to be warmly or deeply appreciative of the kindness or benefits received. Let’s see. I do appreciate that God has saved me from my sins. I appreciate that I still have my house and my husband has his job. I very much appreciates how hard my husband works to do well at his job. I appreciate that I have unemployment money coming in. I appreciate that my children are mostly healthy. I am thankful that two of my children will graduate from college this year. I do appreciate the help from the schools for two of my children on how much financial aid they have gotten. I appreciate the love I feel and the support I have from my family and my small group.2. expressing or actuated by gratitude: a grateful letter.Ok. I guess I should be expressing my gratitude more often. I should give away more smiles and hugs. I should say thank you in actual words. I should let others recognize my gratitude for my husband and my children. That is a lot of “should”. God help me to express my gratitude to others, to my loved ones and to strangers. Help me show others your love for me and that it extends to them.3. pleasing to the mind or senses; agreeable or welcome; refreshing: a grateful breeze.God please forgive me for not being a refreshing grateful breeze to those around me. Help me to be more pleasing to others so that they want to draw near to you.The hardest thing to accept about what my daughter said was the part about being faithful in the little things. Here I think I found my biggest failure. And my only hope is to trust God to help me begin again.God help me to see the importance of little things. God, help me to do the dishes and laundry, to clean and take out the trash with a smile. Give me joy in the little things I do for others. Show me how reading your word brings me closer to you. Help me reach out to you more each day and praise you each day for who you are. Help me to be more like you.Philippians 4:4-7 Always be glad because of the Lord! I will say it again: Be glad. Always be gentle with others. The Lord will soon be here. Don’t worry about anything, but pray about everything. With thankful hearts offer up your prayers and requests to God. Then, because you belong to Christ Jesus, God will bless you with peace that no one can completely understand. And this peace will control the way you think and feel.I Timothy 1:12-14 I’m so grateful to Christ Jesus for making me adequate to do this work. He went out on a limb, you know, in trusting me with this ministry. The only credentials I brought to it were invective and witch hunts and arrogance. But I was treated mercifully because I didn’t know what I was doing—didn’t know Who I was doing it against! Grace mixed with faith and love poured over me and into me. And all because of Jesus.

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