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Happy new year! (Well almost)

This is the time of year that many people start to reflect on the year ending and start putting in place—plans and goals for the following year. It’s an opportunity to start fresh—and while this is good—I want to challenge you to think about something that sometimes gets lost in the business of life—in the good times and especially in the bad times—I'm talking about gratefulness. 

I want to challenge you to think of three things you are truly grateful for? Even if you had one of those tough years. I’m sure you can find three things you are grateful for. Don’t just give a trite answer. Pause for a moment, give the question your full attention and really think about it. Do the responses come easily or do you struggle? If you were to take the time, how long a list could you compile?

Most of us don’t take the time to think regularly about what we are grateful for. However, expressing gratitude is now known to have many benefits—both mentally and physically. Studies have shown that when we consciously focus on blessings—as compared to burdens—both emotional and interpersonal benefits are experienced. Practising gratitude is now one of the most robust strategies used in psychology for increasing happiness.

So why is being grateful so uplifting? Gratitude amplifies good memories about the past, which puts us in a positive frame of mind and that positive mindset can help us look to the positives in the present and future.

The Psalmist elegantly wrote, “Let us come into His presence with thanksgiving; let us make joyful noise to Him with songs of praise.” (Ps 95). If we spend just a couple of minutes a day reflecting on God’s goodness, we would surely compose a list of all the things that we are grateful for. God blesses us every day, His mercies are new every morning, His faithfulness is great and everlasting.  

What are you grateful to the Lord for?

We may have had a year that we don’t want to remember, others may have had a year not to forget. Regardless of what 2022 has been—let’s be grateful that God is good all the time. While on this earth we may not understand why He allows us to go through certain situations, but friends, let’s have faith that God works all things for good.

May you all have a Happy New Year and I pray that God blesses you all richly in 2023.

See you in 2023


David Peñate