I often feel like I am just going through the motions of thanksgiving, not really feeling thankful.
As I walked through the woods last week, I racked my brain to find something to be thankful for, it all sounded so trite, thanks for the trees and the beautiful leaves; thank you for the house, the car the kids. Yes, I am overjoyed and thankful for each and everything that my Savior has provided, but it sounded hollow and empty.
It is easy to get caught up in the religious action of being thankful, we are told in the bible to give thanks in all things. But it becomes hollow and empty. We read books about having a thankful heart, and then feel guilty because we say the words but our heart is not connected with thanksgiving.
So, instead of reciting empty words, I opted to thank God for who HE is, and as I did, something shifted in my heart. For over 20 years, this aspect of prayer, where I focus on God, His name and His character has been life-giving and life-changing. It is a simple yet powerful way to pray. I often challenge other single mothers that I mentor to quit asking God for things for 30 days and instead focus on who HE is and ‘adore’ or exalt who He is. One tool I use is called the ABC’s of Adoration. This idea is a “prayer tool” where you go through the ABC’s but for each letter of the alphabet think of a different name or attribute of God.
A You are the All Sufficient God: Thank you God that you are All Sufficient. EVERYTHING I need is found in you. You supply me with wisdom to raise my children…
B You are Beautiful: Thank you God that you are beautiful. My eyes love to see beautiful things and when I close them and imagine the image of the emerald rainbow around your throne, or flashes of lightening coming from your throne it is beautiful. Thank you that you are the Bright and Morning Star…I just imagine the beautiful colors of morning and am fascinated by your beauty.
C You are Caring. God you care for me, thank you. I love the way you have cared for my children over the years. When they wanted to go to camp or even on a mission trip, you always provided. You made sure they had food, clothes, and a roof over their head. You are a Caring Father.
This is easy and GREAT to practice with your children as well. Go through the ABCs with them as you travel from point A to point B. It is a way for them to get to know their Father more fully. By declaring all that He is, all of His names, they grow in the knowledge of their heavenly Father.
Also, when you do this, spend time understanding WHY he is beautiful or caring or all sufficient. Don’t rush through this just saying His name…although that is GREAT because The name of the Lord is a strong tower; The righteous run to it and are safe (Proverbs 18:10); therefore it is vital we know His name. We will not RUN into something we are not familiar with. Take time to become intimately acquainted with His wonderful, powerful Name.
Remember, when we thank God for the things He does and provides it is good and nice but when we begin to set our eyes on HIM it is powerful! He says Seek ME first, not my hand, not my provision but my FACE.
What are your favorite names or attributes of God that you could spend time declaring and thanking Him for?
By Misty Honnold
Mother of 2 adult girls, 2 adult sons & 2 amazing NEW sons (married to daughters)
1 Corinthians 13 Parenting Team Member
Executive Director and Founder of The Single MOM KC
Hostess of Mocha Moments For The Single MOM