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Thankful people are happy people

The Renewed Mind

May 1, 2022

For those who know me, and have attended chapel services I have held, you know that I value three things in guiding people through their spiritual care and life’s journey. First, to love God with all your heart and your neighbor as yourself as recorded in the gospel of Luke:

[Christ] answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”  - Luke 10:27

Second, to enjoy and share the gifts of the Holy Spirit as shared by the Apostle Paul in his letter to the early church in Galatia:

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law.  - Galatians 5:22-23

Third, to live a life of thankfulness and gratitude as enjoyed by the psalmist:

Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.  - Psalm 100:4

In a recent flight, I sat next to a woman who specialized in the psychology related to thankfulness. She inspired me to continue to compel people to live a life of thankfulness. She explained that living a life of intentional thankfulness changed the patterns in the brain that benefit our health in many ways. As I have shared before, my heart doctor gave me one word of advice after my heart surgery. He said, “When you wake up each day, think of three things you can be grateful for. It is good for your heart.” That is exactly what the woman on the plane told me too. She said to even make your health better think of three different things each morning and journal them.  I believe this is something the apostle Paul would agree with. He wrote to the early church in Rome:

Do not conform to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing, and perfect will.  - Romans 12:2

In our society, we tend to look for the worst in people and situations and eagerly criticize those who don’t look like us, agree with us, live like us… I believe a thankful heart will be eager to look for the good and the beauty and the hand of God throughout each day. A thankful heart will renew your mind!

We are created to be thankful people. A thankful attitude will contribute to a youthful spirit. How can you live each day with gratitude?

Written by Campus Pastor Lane Skoglund-Anderson