Posted by: Brian D. Prucey on Thu, Oct 25, 2012
From the monthly church newsletter
“O give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; for His mercy endures forever.” (Psalm 107:1)
A growing body of research has tied an attitude of gratitude with a number of positive emotional and physical health benefits. A November 2010 article in The Wall Street Journal summarized the research:
Adults who frequently feel grateful have more energy, more optimism, more social connections and more happiness than those who do not, according to studies conducted over the past decade. They're also less likely to be depressed, envious, greedy, or alcoholics. They earn more money, sleep more soundly, exercise more regularly, and have greater resistance to viral infections.
Now, researchers are finding that gratitude brings similar benefits in children and adolescents. [Studies also show that] kids who feel and act grateful tend to be less materialistic, get better grades, set higher goals, complain of fewer headaches and stomach aches, and feel more satisfied with their friends, families, and schools than those who don't.
The researchers concluded, "A lot of these findings are things we learned in kindergarten or our grandmothers told us, but now we have scientific evidence to prove them."
I don’t know about you, but I don’t need scientific research to prove the benefits of a thankful heart. The Bible uses the work “thanks” or “thanksgiving” over 100 times. The phrase, “give thanks” appears 59 times in the Bible, almost always in reference to giving thanks to the Lord.
The Lord is the source and object of our thanksgiving. We thank the Lord because of who He is and we thank the Lord because of what He has done. Our God is our creator, our sustainer, our provider, our deliverer, our redeemer, and our savior through Jesus Christ.
In Psalm 73, the psalmist Asaph looked around at all of his troubles and felt very depressed. But when he turned his thought toward the Lord, he realized that even though life is unfair, God is good. He concluded his psalm this way:
“Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” (Psalm 73:25-26)
This thanksgiving season, no matter what is happening in your life, would you give thanks to the Lord, for he is good and his mercy endures forever!
The shepherd loves the sheep!
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