The New Year is a quarter of the way through, holidays are over, and we are all hard at work. So, let me ask you a question. What has, or is changing in your life this year?
At the start of each year many try to make New Year resolutions that never seem to work out. We can look back at last year and the valleys we have traversed or the mountains we have climbed and exclaim “that was tough going” or “what a rush.” However, what of all that which we went through last year has changed our lives, has improved our wellbeing and happiness, has given us a fresh outlook and hope for this year? Not a lot, I guess! In fact, some of us are still in the valley struggling to negotiate those sharp rocks and dangerously narrow paths, all the time wondering and hoping to be rescued.
TobyMac said something along the lines of, you learn lessons in the valley that you can’t learn on the mountain top. This is so sure, but how does it help you survive, learn and grow through the valley as well as the mountain top journeys?
So, let me again ask you my initial question. What has or is changing in your life this year? You are possibly asking, “What has all this got to do with Australia’s National Day of Thanks?” Well, it has everything to do with it. Our mission statement says Thanking God . . . thanking each other. The National Day of Thanks is based on biblical instruction in 1 Thessalonians 5:18 that says, “Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” And Psalm 100:4 says, “Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name.” Remember the old song Count your Blessings – name them one by one…..It is not just a good idea or a catchy song for children, it applies to all of us.
Science can measure the changes in someone who is truly grateful and expresses that gratitude to another person. Clinical studies have been able to measure significant increases in student academic levels, personal happiness, improved social interactions and an increased ability to handle the difficult circumstances that life throws at us. Older people in the tests demonstrated increased health and happiness, and less trips to the doctor. It is amazing what can happen when we simply follow God’s instruction to give thanks in all circumstances. And that is exactly the attitude the National Day of Thanks is wanting to cultivate in our nation.
As you travel through 2019’s valleys and climb its mountain tops, we want to encourage you on your journey to reach out to others and say thank you.
We encourage you to share with us your valley and mountain top stories throughout this year. You never know when your story may become a page in someone else’s survival manual. Please email your story to email@example.com
Let us enjoy this journey of 2019 together with grateful hearts.
Robert J Burman
Coordinator – National Day of Thanks