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    Practicing Gratitude—A Challenge

    A recent leadership conference I attended focused on gratitude. The Chief Executive Officer of the company thought correction in how some members were running their businesses was needed, and therefore spent at least twenty to thirty minutes discussing: How to get gratitude, How to practice it, and How to extend it.  When a CEO of a multi-million dollar company spends that amount of time on any subject, it’s evident that it’s important and is an issue in today’s world, or in that company at least. As it turns out, expressing gratitude (i.e. giving thanks) was an issue in the ancient world, too. The Psalmist and the Apostle Paul spent considerable…

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    A Thankful Heart is a Healthy Heart

    Did you know that in the Net Bible there are 77 verses that have the words “give thanks?”  The first is found in 2 Samuel 22:50, “So I will give you thanks, O Lord, before the nations! I will sing praises to you.” The last is found in Revelation 11:17 “with these words: ‘We give you thanks, Lord God, the All-Powerful, the one who is and who was, because you have taken your great power and begun to reign…’”  1 Chronicles 16:8“Give thanks to the Lord! Call on his name! Make known his accomplishments among the nations!” Over and over in verse after verse we are commanded to “give thanks.”…

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    Giving Thanks for Everything

    Today, some of us will gather around festive tables, eating our fill of roasted turkey, whipped potatoes, and pumpkin pie. It’s Thanksgiving in the United States, and so we pause today to celebrate —to give thanks—for a year filled with beautiful and hard things. But it isn’t as easy as it sounds. Perhaps there’s a chair at our table sitting empty this year. There’s a longing within us that a smile can’t dull. Maybe there’s financial stress that the holidays only highlight. A festive tablescape and full stomach may make us feel good for a moment, but they cannot fix the hurts and heartaches that we often carry with us…