Monday Minute with God: What I’m Learning by Larissa Traquair
In October of 2012, God put it on my heart to start focusing on gratitude, via social media. Every year I would see gratitude posts pop up throughout November and I loved reading each one.
And so began my new nightly routine: posting 3 things I was grateful for on Facebook. My hope was that I would do this every night through November.
What happened went way beyond the rest of that year.
As a Marine spouse, for the first time in our marriage, I listed all the things I was so grateful for instead of complaining about my struggles.
Instead of complaining about our current duty station, I discovered all the reasons I loved it.
We were stationed on the island of Oahu at this time and you would think that there would be nothing to complain about in Hawaii. However, the list is long, but I rarely share it because who is going to feel sorry for me anyway. “It rains every day on Oahu” – others would say, “But you live in Hawaii and you have an ocean view from your deck.”
How do you argue that logic?
What I’m Learning
As I thought about three things I wanted to list each night, God taught me how to be content wherever He placed us.
I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. -Philippians 4:12 (NIV)
Choosing contentment in all of my circumstances, I found that I was more and more grateful for where I was.
Gratitude became a key factor in my life as we transitioned from one duty station to another. My transition time was smoother and shorter as I focused on all that God was doing in the current duty station.
I also learned that God uses the toughest times in our lives to grow us and allow us to put into practice what we have learned. I started my new habit of gratitude after my husband was diagnosed with cancer for the first time.
One way I dealt with the cancer diagnosis was by focusing on what I did have. I am grateful my Marine survived his first round with cancer. He went back to work and was back on the golf course within 6 weeks of his surgery.
We experienced a renewed appreciation for life.
We enjoyed walking the beach every Sunday. This time together, along with the experience of a scary diagnosis, prepared us for new challenges.
Three-and-a-half years after starting my gratitude journey we were told cancer not only had returned but that it had spread. The doctors say it is terminal, but we are believing for a miracle.
I can stay positive through the chemo appointments and the daily reality of cancer because God built a strong foundation of gratitude in my daily habits.
God has even birthed a ministry out of our pain.
How I’m Learning
Building new habits by daily practice. I thought it was going to be hard to come up with 3 things to be grateful for every night. And yet, it became a habit that inspired me to see many things to be grateful for every day. It changed the way I view life.
Choosing gratitude every day. One of my favorite scriptures helps me remember the power and discipline I have to focus on gratitude.
For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. -2 Timothy 1:7 (NLT)
Think About It
I have been posting 3 things I am grateful for every night now for over 5 years.
This practice has evolved and I now post it on my top 3 social media platforms. The bonus benefit I get is hearing others say they look forward to reading my daily posts.
Do you write down what you are grateful for on a daily basis? Do you have a gratitude journal or do you post your gratitude on social media?
Daily gratitude translates into an “All In” attitude.
Discover the power of being All In by choosing gratitude every day.
I am “All In” no matter where the military sends me. By the power of God, I’m All In even when facing cancer. I have learned to be content and to focus on God.
Pray About It
Father, we are so grateful for Jesus who makes it possible for us to enjoy the benefits of being a child of God daily. Thank You for loving us and creating habits in us that benefit us far past anything we can think or imagine.
This post is part of our Monday Minute Linkup and we would love for you to join in the fun!