Last year my parents invited a big crowd to their house for Thanksgiving. During dinner the discussion turned to who would host the Thanksgiving dinner the following year. Since Mike and I had just bought our first home, we were drafted. I had never cooked a turkey or hosted a large get-together in any setting—let alone in our small home.

Sixteen people confirmed their attendance. Great, I thought. How are they all going to fit around our tiny table? I’ll have people spread out all over the house.

Then I realized I was being grumpy instead of grateful. I prayed, Father, please help me quit grumbling and remember that Thanksgiving isn’t about the food or where everyone sits, but it’s a day to focus on all of the blessings You’ve given us.

We’re all tempted to have a grumpy, negative attitude from time to time. But viewing situations with a heart of gratitude is a deliberate act of the will and takes practice. Through the study of God’s Word, we can learn to see our circumstances from God’s point of view. Then when we begin to focus on all the Lord has done for us, we can serve Him and others with genuine gratitude.

Keeping things in perspective when we have such busy schedules can be difficult. We need to remind ourselves what special occasions like Thanksgiving are all about. Rather than focusing on how frazzled we are, we should give thanks to God for all the blessings we have. Spend time resting in Him, and He will help us take care of the rest.

“Whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him” (Col. 3:17).

  1. Journey Day by Day: Living Life Well. Nashville, TN: B&H Books.

Check out the new Bible Study, No More Grumpy Christians. It will equip your people to life joy-filled, faith-saturated, positive, optimistic lives. It is available on Amazon, as well as part of the Good Questions Have Groups Talking subscription service. (Like Netflix for Bible lessons.)