What can help you have
A stronger immune system
Increased quality and quantity of sleep
Decreased feelings of loneliness
Better relationships, including more feelings of connection and generosity
A better sense of self-worth
More feelings of happiness and joy
More resistance to stress
And greater life satisfaction?
According to Robert Emmons, a scientific researcher and expert on gratitude, the practice of thankfulness supplies all these benefits and more.
I love Robert Emmons’ research because I love to see scientific validation of God’s truth. Clearly, there are some pretty good reasons why the apostle Paul tells us to "Thank God no matter what happens” (1 Thessalonians 5:18, MSG). Not that I need science to believe God’s Word. But I love how it affirms the goodness and wisdom of God. It’s like, In case you were wondering, there are actually some legitimate reasons God tells us to do what He does.
When God tells us to be thankful, it’s not a random command or a superfluous suggestion. He tells us to be thankful because He knows that thankfulness helps us function at our best.
We really can trust Him. We can rest knowing that everything He asks of us is for our benefit.
Being thankful on a daily basis is not always easy. On really hard days, we might have to stretch ourselves to find things we’re thankful for. The beautiful thing is, when we choose to obey and practice gratitude “no matter what,” how we feel, and even our circumstances, are bound to change. Moods brighten, relationships improve, and even our bodies respond with better health. Thankfulness. It’s such a powerful tool for vibrant life.
As special as Thanksgiving Day is, thankfulness was never meant to be a once-a-year event.
I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving, and I hope you’ll join me in keeping gratitude going—and reaping its benefits—throughout the year!
Sources: Why Gratitude is Good and Thanks!: How Practicing Gratitude Can Make You Happier, both by Robert Emmons
“Be cheerful no matter what; pray all the time; thank God no matter what happens. This is the way God wants you who belong to Christ Jesus to live” 1 Thessalonians 5:18 (MSG).
I want to hear from you!
How have you reaped the benefits of thanksgiving in your life? I'd love to hear about it in the comments below!
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