The Reformed Life

Equipping followers of Christ to live in a manner worthy of their calling

The Most Neglected Time of Gratitude


23292_PRAYERWhat is the most neglected time of being grateful to our God? Some might think that it’s when things are going well for us. When things are going well in your life it’s easy to forget God. It’s easy to forget His provision and blessing. It’s easy to forget that every good and perfect gift is from above (James 1:17).

We think that somehow our prosperity is a result of our hand and we take credit for the blessings that have come from God. It is true that the season of prosperity is one of the most neglected times of gratitude towards God, but I believe there is a greater time of neglect for God. The most neglected time of gratitude towards God is in the morning. In the morning? Yes, in the morning.

The most neglected time of gratitude towards God is usually the moment we wake up. Think about it. Your alarm goes off, rousing you from your sleep, you open your eyes, turn it off, and if you’re like me, you begin looking at social media, text messages, and emails. Quickly, your thoughts wander to the news of the world, your children’s events, work schedule, etc. while never stopping to take a minute and reflect on the fact that you did not wake yourself up this morning. It’s true that your alarm woke you up, but your waking to the alarm is a result of God’s grace and mercy on your life. Paul says,

Nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everythingActs 17:25

Paul continues and says, “In him we live and move and have our being (Acts 17:28).” How humbling is this truth? The very breath that you are breathing, while reading this, is by the mercy and grace of God. God is the giver of life. But God is not simply the giver of life, He is the sustainer of life. Every breath you take is a gift of God.

When you wake up in the morning, you are waking by the mercy and grace of God. That’s a sobering thought when you wake up. “Wow, God, you gave me another day.” But why don’t we typically wake up praising God? We forget how much we depend on Him. Somehow, we have become accustomed to God’s mercy and what is supposed to humble us, is now taken for granted. We take for granted the mercy and grace of our God when we fail to contemplate Him prior to falling asleep. We take for granted His mercy when we slip away into bed. James says it like this,

“Come now, you who say, today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit-yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, if the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that. As it is, you boast in your arrogance.”-James 4:13-16

That’s a tough pill to swallow. Presuming ahead of time is arrogance! But it’s true. We presume on the grace of God when we believe we’ll be alive in the next hour, next minute, next day, or next second. Our lives are fleeting away and there will be a day when we all take our last breath.

Let that reality compel us to praise the grace and mercy of God that gives us every second we have on this earth. Thank him for the gift that He has given you by waking you up this morning, and let us not abuse it with the way we live today. Let us take the time when we wake up to first praise God for the very breath that we have in our lungs. If you have not thanked him yet, do so now.

Josh Chambers

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