Gratitude is a virtue we all want to have but sometimes it is hard to know how to express it practically. Today we are going to look at three ways that we can express gratitude first to the Lord and then to others.
Let’s begin with what the Bible has to say on this topic, here are two examples:
The meaning of the word thankful gives us a clue! One word often translated for thankful or to give thanks is the word yadah.
The definition of this word in Hebrew is to throw or cast. This word is most commonly translated as confess, give thanks, and praise. By combining the definition and translation we come up with the word picture of one who is thankful.
These are prayers we can do throughout the day; we can cast up a prayer when we wake up, take care of children, do our job, drive to our appointment, or even while cooking dinner. These are all opportunities to thank the Lord for the blessings we have received.
Not only do we want to express thankfulness to the Lord, but also those around us.
Each day the Lord gives us ways to express gratitude; this month let’s add words of thanks to our daily list. Gratitude includes thankfulness but there is another element, blessings.
Like thankful, the definition gives us a clue. One word often translated bless is the word barak.
The definition of this word is to bless or kneel. This word is most commonly translated as to bless. By combining the definition and translation we come up with the word picture of one who is blessing the Lord.
One who is kneeling and offering a blessing to the Lord.
For me, it is easier to give thanks than it is to bless the Lord. Giving thanks is something I can throw up to the Lord as I go through my day.
However, showing gratitude in the form of a blessing to the Lord is much harder for me. Kneeling makes me stop what I am doing, change positions, and think through what I am saying to the Lord.
Blessings the Lord has been used by believers over the centuries, and some ancient blessings follow a unique pattern: taking note of something, remembering God’s character, and blessing Him for that thing in connection to His character.
For example, here are three sample blessings that use this pattern.
Notice the pattern of blessing the name of God and specifically blessing aspects of His character. These blessings give us ideas on how we can expand how we express gratitude to the Lord, but how about to others.
As we enter into this time of Thanksgiving, may we use this season to consistently find things throughout our day to be grateful for, and may we think about practicing thankfulness in these ways:
From all of us at Grapevine we would like hope you have a very Happy Thanksgiving!
Another way to find things to be grateful for is to celebrate the Biblical Feasts. You can watch a short video about the Bible Feasts here.
You can also read a summary of the Biblical holidays here.