3 ways to create a gratitude journal you can stick with

I have started and stopped more gratitude journals then I’d care to admit.

I cannot seem to keep it up.

The journals, that is. Gratefulness, though? I feel that all the time.

Gratitude has two big things going for it:

  1. Its affects on your health (emotional, social, and physical) are so numerous it’s ridiculous few of us practice it with intentionality and consistency. ***If you need proof, check out this article and this article and this article.
  2. God tells us to be grateful.  ***If you need proof, check out this verse and this verse and this verse.

Thankfulness is the natural response to a real encounter with Jesus. And every good thing we have is a gift from God (James 1:17).

As we enter November and this season leading up to Thanksgiving, let’s recenter our hearts on all the goodness and beauty we experience. And thank God.

I love this verse from Psalm 107:8-9…

Let them thank the Lord for his steadfast love,

    for his wonderful works to humankind.

For he satisfies the thirsty,

    and the hungry he fills with good things.

 

If you’re like me and struggle with finding your gratitude-journal groove, here are 3 Ways To Keep a Gratitude Journal:

  1. Jot a list of whatever comes to your mind. Write down the things you’re thankful for, big and small. The more specific, the better.
  2. Pick a topic or just one thing that you are grateful for and write a paragraph or two about what you like about it and why you’re thankful, etc.
  3. Choose a theme and write a record of the things in that category that you are grateful for. Theme examples are: Family members, Items in my home, Aspects about my job, Things in nature, Characteristics of Jesus, Aspects of my children, Stories in the Bible, Things I thought were bad initially but turned out for my good

 

Determine to write until you run out of ideas, or pick a goal number (5? 10? 15?) that you’ll write each day. Keep up the practice each day in November.

And if you’re short on time, just choose one thing to thank God for. Mull it over in your mind a bit. Writing it down is always best, but do what you can.

It’s a powerful thing to keep this list of all the things you have to be grateful for and look back at it. Show it to your children. Let it be a testimony to God’s goodness.

I’ve decided, though, that it’s okay if your lists are all over the place. Or if you write in one journal this month, lose it somewhere in your house, start in a new one next month, use scratch paper the next, and so on. The accumulation of gratitude will build in your soul even if the journaling is all over the place.

 

Quick Note For Parents … We must model the characteristics we want our children to have. Let’s be the kind of adults we hope our kids will become.

 

The last entry I have in a gratitude journal was from over two months ago.

Instead of feeling guilty about it, I’m going to pick up where I left off.

I’m grateful that God is patient with me. (Hey! There’s my first entry for the month!)

Question for you: What’s one thing you’re grateful for today?

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