How can we thank God for the gift of life?
There have been many seasons that found me lacking gratitude for life. Life is hard and when life is hard for so long it is tough to stay thankful.
It wasn't until my mid-twenties that I realized just how precious life was and why developing an attitude of gratitude is critical for the peace we desire. Today we will create a prayer to thank God for the gift of life and see how to use it as a catalyst for change.
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How to Thank God for the Gift of Life
Finding a path to living with a thankful heart is not a natural thing. Life has been hard for as long as I can remember and it is easier to grumble and complain about all the hard parts than to be thankful. So as we dig into how to thank God for the gift of life I need you to know that if it's tough for you, you are not alone.
“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18 ESV
Some people say I did this backward because I created a prayer to thank God for the gift of life before I felt thankful. It happened in stages as I practiced what I wanted in my life slowly and the feelings followed.
- Decide to thank God for the gift of life.
- Intentionally pray the prayer every day.
- Find the good in the midst of the hard.
Decide to Thank God
A good friend challenged me to start thinking differently about the day in this way. Instead of looking at the day as drudgery filled with responsibility and hardship, I began seeing it as a fresh chance to serve God.
We can thank God in prayer every day as each new day is a gift from God. Even when that day is filled with hard things it is still a gift.
Gratitude is a choice you have to make each day anew. There will always be hard things you could grumble about, but there are also blessings in life to thank the Lord about. Choosing gratitude brings joy and hope as we know God more as a loving Father!
Thanking God for the gift of life is a choice that you have to be intentional to make each new day. You have to make a plan or it won't happen. You have to develop a routine through discipline or it won't last.
The thing I've learned is that you can't be afraid to try and fail. This is how it looked for me along the journey.
- My plan initially was to end the day in prayer, thanking God for all the good parts of the day. This failed in my life because I'd fall asleep before saying much to Him.
- Next, I tried to pray while I ate lunch. This worked at first, but then I'd forget or get distracted by friends or work.
- Finally, I set my alarm 20 minutes early in the morning and spent that time in prayer. It was a sacrifice to go to bed a bit earlier but it was more realistic. I also found starting the day with prayer made my day more peaceful.
Honestly, there isn't a right or wrong time to pray and give thanks. We are all different. Just find the time that works for you and make a plan to do it!
Find the Good
So let's just have a quick reality check; life really is hard. There really are challenges in each of our lives. Some of mine have been crazy hard.
- Loss and grief
I am not suggesting you ignore all the hard bits when praying this prayer to thank God for the gift of life. Nope, what I am suggesting is that after you rail at God, or beg God for help, that you look deeper at the things happening all around you. Even in the midst of trials, there are usually blessings.
Related Post: 7 Ways to Begin Walking in the Grace of God Every Day
Think about it like the black dot on a clean white sheet of paper. The black dot is the challenge you faced today. Does the dot ruin the entire sheet of paper? No. Most of the paper is clean. It's the same with our life.
There are challenges, but they only feel consuming. The reality is there are countless things to be thankful for all throughout our day. If we are intentional we can find them and find joy even in the midst of the most trying hardships.
Thanking God for the Gift of Life Quotes
The challenge of living with a thankful heart is not new. Throughout history, people have needed reminders to thank God for the big and small things – and simply just for being. These are some quotes from famous Christians thanking God for the gift of life.
- “I want to thank you, Lord, for life and all that’s in it. Thank you for the day, the hour, and the minute.” – Maya Angelou.
- “God is in control, and therefore in EVERYTHING I can give thanks – not because of the situation but because of the One who directs and rules over it.” –Kay Arthur
- “I believe gratitude is a direct result of our expectations.” –Jennie Allen
- “When we choose thankful prayer over wallowing in anxiety and worry, we are demonstrating an unwavering trust in God.” –Priscilla Shirer
- “When life is good and we have no problems, we can almost let ourselves believe we have no need for God. But in my experience, sometimes the richest blessings come through pain and hard things.” – Anne Graham Lotz
- “Don’t take things for granted today. Take them with gratitude.” –Joni Eareckson Tada
- “It is always possible to be thankful for what is given rather than to complain about what is not given. One or the other becomes a habit of life.” – Elizabeth Elliot
- “Grumbling and gratitude are, for the child of God, in conflict. Be grateful and you won’t grumble. Grumble and you won’t be grateful.” – Billy Graham
- “We ought to give thanks for all fortune: if it is good, because it is good, if bad, because it works in us patience, humility and the contempt of this world and the hope of our eternal country.” –C.S. Lewis
- “Genuine thankfulness is an act of the heart’s affections, not an act of the lips’ muscles.” – John Piper
- “Thanksgiving will draw our hearts out to God and keep us engaged with Him; it will take our attention from ourselves and give the Spirit room in our hearts.” –Andrew Murray
- “Gratitude is an offering precious in the sight of God, and it is one that the poorest of us can make and be not poorer but richer for having made it.” –A.W. Tozer
- “Gratitude develops faith. The surest path out of a slump is marked by the road sign ‘thank you, God.” – Max Lucado
- “It’s one thing to be grateful. It’s another to give thanks. Gratitude is what you feel. Thanksgiving is what you do.” – Tim Keller
Remember these quotes about being thankful to God for giving us the most precious gift of life to live out on this earth! Be sure to share these thank God for the gift of life images on social media to encourage others to do the same!
Prayer to Thank God For Giving Me Life
When I started praying in thanks for each new day of life the prayer was very choppy and impersonal. As I began to really feel grateful though, it changed. This prayer is just to get you started, change it to fit your life as you begin to see the blessings and really feel grateful.
Gracious Heavenly Father,
Thank You for this new day. Thank You for a new opportunity to serve You. I praise You for the new mercy and grace that are mine each day (Lamentations 3:22-23).
Today I declare that You, Lord, are my strength and my shield; in You my heart trusts, and I am helped! Help my heart delight in You and sing to You all day long (Psalm 28:7).
You rescued me from the path of destruction, You have kept my feet from slipping back into sin and misery (Psalm 40:2). I give You thanks for the Salvation I could never earn or deserve. Your grace, which is sufficient, is too extravagant for me, I could never thank You enough for it.
Thank You also that this life is just a moment and eternity will be without pain or fear (James 4:14). Thank You for preparing a place for me with You there (John 14:3). It makes the struggle of today worth it knowing the hope of eternity is bright.
Help me not take a moment of today for granted. Keep my eyes on You (Isaiah 26:3) and my mind on telling and showing others about You. Use my life today to glorify You alone. Amen.
See each day as a gift from God!
When I start the day with this prayer to thank God for the gift of life I see the day as a gift. Seeing each day as a gift from God changes how I live that day. Peace and joy come when I live today as the gift that it is.