Praying in 2017- Day 3: Thankfulness

You also must help us by prayer, so that many will give thanks on our behalf for the blessing granted us through the prayers of many. (2 Corinthians 1:11 ESV)

Day 2: we asked God to help us seek Him this year. Today we will concentrate on thanksgiving.

Before we move into praying for 2017, we need to make sure we have dealt well with 2016. Taking a moment to stop and reflect helps to bring the work God performed into focus. Honestly, it is so easy, in the busyness of our days, to not recognize what God has done. 

Most women can identify with this, because families often don’t notice a neat home, clean clothes, or a hot dinner. They don’t mean to be ungrateful. Those things just represent their “normal.” But if we stopped doing our job- THAT would be obvious! 

  • The LORD is my strength and my shield; My heart trusts in Him, and I am helped; Therefore my heart exults, And with my song I shall thank Him. (Psalm 28:7, NASB)

So it is with the Lord- He continually works to guide, protect, and sustain us. It is easy for this “normal” lovingkindness to occur without recognizing it. So let’s stop today and think through last year. What did the Lord do? How did He protect? Where did He provide? Ask the Lord, throughout today, to bring to your mind items to be grateful for, and then pause to give thanks!

  • Remember the wondrous works that he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he uttered, (Psalm 105:5, ESV)

If it seems difficult to get think of items to offer thanks for, start with simple things: running water, electricity, a heater, food in the refrigerator, clean clothes in the drawer. If you are an American, your “normal” is wealthy in many parts of the world.

  • For everything created by God is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, for it is made holy by the word of God and prayer. (1 Timothy 4:4-5, ESV)

Even if last year was a difficult one, we are still called to be thankful. When life is hard, being thankful is a challenge. No wonder God calls us to give a SACRIFICE of thanksgiving. There have been a few years of my life where I had to drag myself from one year to the next. But even then, Jesus deserved my gratitude.

  • Let them also offer sacrifices of thanksgiving, And tell of His works with joyful singing. (Psalm 107:22 NASB)

Day 3 Prayer

  •  in everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. (1 Thessalonians 5:18, NASB)

Oh my Jesus, there is so much to praise you for. I know I often sail right past your lovingkindnesses without pausing to recognize them. Please forgive me for that. Today I want to thank you for everything I can think of from 2016.

Lord, thank you for how You provided what was necessary.
Lord, thank you for what You withheld in Your sovereignty.

Thank you that you want me to be fruitful. It is a privilege to bear fruit for Your kingdom. I thank You for all the ways You pruned, fertilized, watered, and trained me last year. May You get the glory from any fruit that results from that.

Thank you Jesus for every situation, challenge, difficulty, illness, and struggle.
Thank you Jesus for each blessing, provision, advantage, and surprise.
Lord, I praise You that You are at work in my life and in every member of my family.

And Lord, my greatest praise is that You, the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe, desires an intimate relationship with me. You love me, gave Yourself for me, and call me to Your side. I don’t ever want to forget to be grateful for the relationship I have with You.

Please, today, bring to mind items large or small from last year for which I never thanked You. I want to spend all day seeing what You did in 2016, and thanking You for each and every one. You are such a good Father. Thank you for loving me

I will enjoy reveling today in the memories of the Lord's gracious acts in my life in 2016. Thanking God for everything He did last year makes me cognizant of His intimate care of me. That makes me expectant of what He will do in 2017! 

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Day 4: Dealing with grief

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