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Three Ways to Foster a Thankful Heart

Give thanks for all things this Thanksgiving—the good, the bad, and everything in between. God’s Word tells us in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 to “rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

This can be difficult to do when times are tough. Our natural tendency is to ask, “Why me? Or “Why my child?” We can easily get stuck in a place of pity and maybe even blame the Lord for our problems.

Instead, we should rejoice always, pray continually, and give thanks in all circumstances.

1. Rejoice always

In the joy-filled times and in the times of despair, we are to rejoice. Unbridled joy is cause for rejoicing. It’s in the difficulties of life when it gets hard.

We’ve all heard the old adage, “God doesn’t give you more than you can handle.” But after speaking with a friend, I looked at it in a different light. She said, “God allows you to experience more than you can handle. That’s when you learn to rely on Him.”

So, rejoice that He will never leave or forsake you or your children, even in the roughest moments (Deuteronomy 31:6).

2. Pray continually. 

As a mom of two boys, I pray all the time. Not just for protection but also for my sons to make good choices and if they don’t, to get caught.

I pray the boys work hard with the gifts and talents God has given them and that they show the love of Christ to those they encounter.

God is not confined to time and space, so pray big for your family, our country, and the world. Nothing is impossible with God (Luke 1:37). 

3. Give thanks in all circumstances.

God is in all things and through all things. When the going gets rough, remember all things work for the purpose of His will (Ephesians 1:11b). When you or your children are in pain, lean into the One who can handle the situation. Rest in His love and be thankful you can always count on the Lord to bring goodness out of bad situations.

Rejoice always, pray continually, and give thanks in all circumstances. This is God’s will for us in Christ. With Thanksgiving right around the corner, consider using 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 with your family. Rejoice in His blessings, pray for His guidance, and thank Him for His love. 

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About the Author

Becky Danielson, M.Ed.

Becky Danielson, M.Ed.

Becky Danielson, M.Ed., has two of the best job descriptions, wife and mom. She is also a licensed Parent & Family Educator, co-founder of 1 Corinthians 13 Parenting, and the co-author of Raising Little Kids with Big Love and Raising Big Kids with Supernatural Love along with Study Guides. The series is available on Amazon. Becky and her family live in the Land of 10,000 Lakes. Subscribe to the parenting newsletter at FaithFirstParent.com and the quarterly newsletter at 1Corinthians13Parenting.com for parenting tips, strategies, and resources to equip and encourage you on your parenting journey.


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