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Endless Gifts, the Way of Contentment



"In every loss there is only suffering, but in every discontent there is a sin; and one sin is worse than a thousand sufferings" Thomas Watson


"However many blessings we expect from God, His infinite liberality will always exceed all our wishes and our thoughts."  --John Calvin

"The constant tenor and spirit of our lives should be
adoring gratitude, love, reverence, and thanksgiving
to the Most High."  -Spurgeon

"The only way to get thanksgiving into its true place in our lives—is to have it grow into a habit. A habit is a well worn path...

There are many encouragements to a life of thanksgiving. For one thing, it makes life much happier. The person who indulges in fretting and complaining—is missing much that is loveliest, both in character and in experience. The tendency of such a life is toward gloom and depression, and these qualities in the heart soon show themselves on the face and in the manner. Light is the emblem of a beautiful life—but ingratitude is darkness rather than light. If we would be happy—we must train ourselves to be grateful. Ingratitude makes life dreary for us.

Another reason for cultivating the thanksgiving spirit, is because of its influence on others. Nobody loves a sullen person. We are exhorted to think of "whatever things are lovely," and cheerlessness is not lovely. If we would have people like us, if we would attract them to us and have good influence over them—we must cultivate happiness in all our expressions. There are many people who have formed the habit of unhappiness. They may be good and honest—but they have not learned the lesson of gladness. And they are not helpful people. They are not diffusers of joy."  J.R. Miller

"Reader! cultivate this thankful spirit, it will be to you a perpetual feast. There is, or ought to be, with us no such thing as small mercies; all are great, because the least are undeserved. Indeed, a really thankful heart will extract motive for gratitude from everything, making the most even of scanty blessings. Paul, when in his dungeon at Rome, a prisoner in chains is heard to say, "I have all and abound!"...

While the sweet melody of gratitude vibrates through every successive moment of our daily being, let love to our adorable Redeemer show for whom and for what it is we reserve our notes of loftiest and most fervent praise. Thanks be unto God for His unspeakable Gift!" MacDuff

"We must not focus more on the blessings than on the One whom we receive them from. I believe God does innumerably more in our lives through one thousand sufferings than through one thousand blessings. What we must focus on is the great suffering of Christ on our behalf and what that accomplished."   Jennifer Pavier

"O, Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His mercy endures forever!" 1 Chronicles 16:34

"Holy Spirit, influence my heart, and tune my tongue, that I may gratefully give thanks unto the Lord, praising him not only with my lips — but with life. O for grace from God, that I may daily give thanks to God, and speak of his goodness, and celebrate his mercy, in every possible way!" 
James Smith (1858)

"I doubt that there is such a thing as a measure of spirituality, but if there is, gratitude would be it. Only the grateful are paying attention. They are grateful because they pay attention, and they pay attention because they are so grateful" (Barnes, The Pastor as Minor Poet as quoted by D.Wilson).

"The only way to get thanksgiving into its true place in our lives—is to have it grow into a habit. A habit is a well worn path. There was a first step over the course, breaking the way. Then a second person, finding the prints of feet, walked in them. A third followed, then a fourth, until at length there was a beaten path, and now thousands go upon it.

Likewise, one who has been full of miserable discontents, utterly lacking in gratitude, gets a new Divine impulse, and one day is really grateful for a few moments. The impulse comes again, and again he let his life flow toward gratitude. Persisting in the disposition, his heart returns again and again to its gladness, until by and by it has been lured altogether away from the old beaten paths of discontent, discouragement, and unhappiness, and runs always in the ways of thanksgiving.

If we find that we have been leaving thanksgiving out of our lives, if we have been allowing ourselves to grumble instead of praise, if we have indulged in unhappiness instead of in gladness—we should instantly set about the breaking of a new path, a thanksgiving path. It will not be easy at first, for gloomy dispositions when long indulged persist in staying in our lives. But they can be conquered, and we should not pause in our effort until we have trained ourselves entirely away from everything that is cheerless and ungrateful, into the ways of joy and song."

J.R. Miller


"Give thanks in everything." Thanksgiving should never be lacking in a Christian life. It is not enough to observe one day in the year for 'Thanksgiving', although it is a very beautiful thing to do. Nor is it enough to put a sentence of thanksgiving into our daily prayers, although this also is proper. It is the grateful heart that pleases God, the heart that is always full of praise. There should be a note of thanksgiving running through all our life. Too many of us go to God only with requests, with our burdens, our worries, our troubles; while we but rarely go to Him with any word of thanks. We are not to be thankful only for our prosperities and for the pleasant and agreeable things that come into our days—we are to be thankful, too, for the things that appear to us as adversities."

J.R. Miller




Learning contentment,








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If I am happy it is because of God! God, in His sovereign grace, has called me out of darkness into His Admirable light. He has opened my eyes and has shown me the way to Eternal Life. He has set my feet on a journey, and now I am walking Daily on My Way to Heaven. I did not find Jesus, He found me. I did not seek Him, yet He called me. I did not love Him, yet He loved me. I deserved death and He gave me Life. This is the place where I keep a journal of my life under His sun and by His grace!
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Borrowed Words

"It becomes us to spend this life only as a journey toward heaven... to which we should subordinate all other concerns of life. Why should we labor for or set our hearts on anything else, but that which is our proper end and true happiness?"

Jonathan Edwards

"I am still pondering God's greatness in His creation. I have so many questions that I would like to ask the Lord about the universe, creation, the fall of man... But when I'm in heaven, I wonder if I will even remember them. At that time, being in the presence of God will be enough. I'm thankful that I can look forward to that day."

-Persis

“Heaven is not here, it’s There. If we were given all we wanted here, our hearts would settle for this world rather than the next. God is forever luring us up and away from this one, wooing us to Himself and His still invisible Kingdom, where we will certainly find what we so keenly long for.”

- Elisabeth Elliot, Keep a Quiet Heart



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