News from the Tennessee Valley Religion

Carolyn Brackin Orr

An attitude of extreme gratitude

We are living in a time when complaining is just as natural as breathing, when moaning, groaning and feeling sorry for ourselves is such a way of life that no one finds it unusual.

Today a compliment automatically makes one think that you are trying to flatter for personal gain. Our minds are simply no longer conditioned to hear or say nice things to one another.

An old song included this refrain: "I just called to say I love you. I just called to say how much I care for you. I just called to say I love you. And I mean it from the bottom of my heart."

The words should apply to our everyday walk with Christ.

When was the last time you picked up the phone to say something nice? Not to pump anyone up. Not to be seen or heard of men. But just to obey the commandment of God when we are urged to love another as ourselves.

Romans 5:6 states, "For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly." That means you and me. When we were yet in sin, when we were yet cutting one another's throat with harsh words, Christ died for our sins. When we were yet bad-mouthing our mates, speaking ill against our co-workers, being rude to clerks and cashiers, Christ died for our sins.

When we were calling in sick to work, hanging out with the wrong crowd, lying to our parents and bosses, Christ died for our sins. Some of you are thinking, yeah, that was over 2,000 years ago. Well, each time we backbite, complain, moan and groan, we are crucifying Christ again.

We must begin to focus on the good things that are in our lives. We must forget about what we don't have and be thankful for what we do have. We must forgive and forget.

Count your blessings

We must begin each day counting our blessings. I am convinced that taking this approach to each morning will eliminate much of the mumbling and grumbling that consumes so much of our time.

In my list of blessings I include my husband, my child, health, food, shelter, sound mind, income, transportation, freedom to praise God, good co-workers, ability to type and use a computer, my five senses, a variety of clothing, Christian television and radio, Bibles, my pastors and church family and on and on. Do you see how the list of things to be thankful for is never ending?

An attitude of gratitude can happen. Will you welcome your mate home today with a warm, loving smile?

Will you pray: "Set a watch O Lord, before my mouth and guard the door of my lips," when faced with challenges during the day?

Will you begin each morning counting your blessings?

Guest columnist Carolyn Brackin Orr is a minister at Oakville Christian Faith Center. For more information, call Melanie Smith on Tuesdays or Wednesdays at 340-2468.

Carolyn Brackin Orr Carolyn Brackin Orr

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