4 Ways to Practice Sabbath This Year… (or, 4 Ways to Be More Thankful)

4 Ways to Be More Thankful This Year at www.annswindell.com
This is the start of my newest piece for RELEVANT Magazine.
You can read the full article here.

Many of us have just finished a busy year, full of work, obligations, relationships, and opportunities.

These things are good and meaningful, and we wouldn’t want to live our lives without them. But a lot of us are also intensely busy much more than we should be. We assume that we should be busy or that a busy life is inevitable.

But while there will always be seasons of our lives that are necessarily more demanding than others, they should be just that—seasons that come and go, not indefinite periods of time.

Why?  Because chronic busyness can inhibit our ability to live attentively, and attentiveness is one of the clearest ways we have to acknowledge and encounter God’s presence in our daily lives. When we’re too busy to slow down, it becomes very easy to miss what God is doing in the regular, hum-drum monotony of our lives. And really, that’s the only place we can actually encounter God: here and now, today.

Chronic busyness can inhibit our ability to live attentively and encounter God's presence in our… Click To Tweet

Here are four ways to slow down and pay attention to God’s work in the middle of our normal lives—ways that can strengthen our faith in God’s goodness and love every day.

Pay Attention to What You Have

If you’re like me, then you assume you’re thankful for what you have. But when I actually make the time to slow down and think about what I have—and then speak my gratitude out loud, in prayer or praise, I often find myself overwhelmed with what God has given to me.

Yes, I am thankful for the heat in our apartment. Yes, I am thankful for the gas in my car. Yes, I am thankful for the water that runs like a river from my sink. Yes, I am thankful for eyes that see and for glasses that help me. Yes, I am thankful for my work and my family. Yes, I am thankful for a salvation I could never earn, a Love I can never outrun. Yes, yes, yes.

I am thankful for a salvation I could never earn, a Love I can never outrun. Click To Tweet

Paying attention to all I have—already—turns my heart toward Jesus in thankfulness. I may not have all I want, but I have so much more than I deserve, all because of God’s love and mercy to me. Paying attention helps me encounter Him afresh.

Read the rest of the article here, at RELEVANT!

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