Today was very special for me; I walked the 20 minutes up a valley needed to see this beautiful bluebell carpet, it was breath-taking and the smell was amazing. Due to four years of chronic illness (more on that here) and living away from the area before then I haven’t seen them in years.
The visit made me reflect on the wonder of God’s creation and how he blesses us with it; he creates beautiful flowers which don’t last long for our enjoyment. He blesses us in so many ways with creation; it is a reminder to count the blessings I do have in my life. Now this is clearly easy when things are going well, but I can testify to the power of thanksgiving when in a tough place. When I was sick I was often in a dark place mentally, my husband would tell me to list 20 things I was thankful for and wouldn’t let me move on until I did. It was difficult; sometimes I had to start simple and slowly; but as I continued to think of things I would realise how much I have to be thankful for and what God has done for me. Thankfulness is a decision, we can cultivate a spirit of thankfulness even when life is very hard. Listing what I was thankful for was powerful and helped me lift my eyes to God, even if I started with gritted teeth! I also find Matt Redman’s song 10,000 Reasons (Bless the Lord) a helpful resource for doing this because the song outlines how whatever the season of life we have so much to thank God for.
I often find when I am not in a position of thankfulness I am worrying or stressed. Jesus calls us in Matthew 6:25-34 to not worry by reminding us of how God cares for flowers in a field and birds in the air. We are more valuable than nature to God and he knows the details of our lives and he cares. His instruction to us is to seek first his Kingdom and righteousness in everything we do. So whether you are having a great day or an awful day, I challenge you to take some time to focus on Jesus and to thank God for the blessings in your life.