A Paradigm Shift

I grew up in a home where we had plenty materially. We shopped at the best stores, had a very nice home and we had a lot of financial freedom. If we wanted to do something, we could, money was not usually an issue. We didn’t hear much about being thankful when I was a child although we always said grace before meals and thanked God for our food.

wine glass filled with water

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High school came along and my father and step-mother divorced so there were a few bumps along the way. We moved out of the beautiful house and lived in one that was not as nice as that one. Money still wasn’t an issue and life rolled along. I went to college where I was on a budget and money was tight. I didn’t think about it much and later married my husband.

Like most newlyweds we didn’t have a lot. I didn’t worry about it thinking that someday I would have the financial freedom I enjoyed when I was younger. Funny thing though, as an adult that day never actually came. Like everyone else, there were bills,medical expenses, taxes and lots of other things that demanded our attention. 

During those early years of marriage and for several years afterwards, I didn’t have a thankful spirit. I was one of those people that had a “glass is half-empty” kind of mentality. I didn’t really express that to anyone and I sure didn’t thank God for the things I had. I was grateful for my husband and children but that was about it.

As the Lord is prone to do, He began to put His finger on the issue. He showed me that I was unthankful and that I hadn’t bothered to thank Him for many of the things He had provided for me. I also had not been expressing thankfulness to my husband and appreciating him for the things he had provided for us.

Since that time, I have been learning thankfulness. For me, it has not come easily or naturally. I must be intentional if I want to thank God for the things He has provided. I must also make an effort to show appreciation to my husband for his efforts on our behalf. 

You see, when we are a “glass is half-empty” kind of person, we always see what we don’t have and what we are missing. The sad thing is that when we see life from that perspective, we are really missing everything. We miss the joy of living and the joy of being thankful for all the good things we do have. What we need is a paradigm shift. Our glass remains filled to the same level, we just need a new way of looking at it. My prayer is that we would go from seeing our “glasses as half-empty” to seeing them “half-full” this Thanksgiving and that we would share that thankfulness with God and with those around us.

God Bless each and every one of you this Thanksgiving. I am thankful for you and for the blessing you are in my life!