Thanksgiving: The Antidote to Worry

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I am a world champion worrier. My worry skills didn’t happen by accident; I’ve enhanced my natural talent with years of practice. I’m good at worry. But God has something better for me than a life filled with anxiety. I’ve found a silver bullet that stops worry in its tracks: thanksgiving.

Philippians 4:7 says “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Nutshell version: Don’t worry. Pray. But how? We aren’t told to pray by begging and bargaining or to constantly rehearse our concerns like a cow chewing her cud. God tells us to simply present our requests before him with thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving is the antidote to worry. Worry keeps us living in an uncertain future. Thanksgiving reminds us to celebrate the blessings of the present. Thanksgiving directs our attention to the loving God who holds our future. The good and perfect gifts in our lives are from Him. Thanking him for the simple gifts of laughter with friends or the beauty of a red-gold autumn leaf reminds us that he who has been faithful to us in the past will not forget us in the future.

I’m trading in my worry habit for a new one: being thankful. When worry strikes, I’m learning to stop, pray, notice the blessings around me, and thank God for being faithful. God is good, and he’s never let me down yet.

And for that I am thankful.

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