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Chap Chats: Be Thankful Every Day

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Have you ever found yourself wondering, “What’s so great about Thanksgiving?” After all, what is it that I have to be thankful for?

For some, Thanksgiving can be a difficult holiday to go through because it brings up an old wound from the past. Maybe this wound stems from the realization that your loved one will not be with you. Or perhaps you haven’t been able to heal from the painful memories of a past holiday gone wrong. Still others might be struggling from the effects of a rough year, thinking that they don’t have much for which to be thankful.Praying_Hands.png

What if I told you that the reason you need to be thankful this Thanksgiving is simply this: Because it’s good for you? In fact, studies have shown that having a thankful heart helps create a healthy life. That’s right, thankfulness is good for us!

In a blog post, author and radio host Dave Ramsey wrote about the benefits of being thankful:
  • Thankfulness improves relationships.
  • Thankfulness creates contentment.
  • Thankfulness feels good.
  • Thankfulness keeps us healthy.
  • Thankfulness cultivates humility.
  • Thankfulness is contagious.
  • Thankfulness produces positivity.
  • Thankfulness promotes generosity.
  • Thankfulness increases likeability.
  • Thankfulness displays God’s behavior.
Where we often get confused is making thankfulness a feeling. Instead, like Love (v), being thankful is a choice. It’s like the Apostle Paul’s challenge, “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice.” (Philippians 4:4 NLT)

The word rejoice literally means to choose joy. I have learned that, when I’m struggling to be thankful for the blessings in my own life, I simply need to remember to rejoice. When I rejoice, thankfulness ultimately comes.

Here’s my thankfulness challenge for you: In November, find something to be thankful for each day, and choose joy for that blessing. Watch what happens.

About the Author
As our Corporate Chaplain, Sheldon Miles serves as, what he calls, “an emotional and spiritual first responder.” His primary responsibilities include encouraging the weary, providing care sessions for the discouraged, and reinforcing Love (v) with our CAREGivers and support staff. 

When asked what Love (v) means to him, Sheldon said, “Love (v) is not about what you get to receive but about what you get to give. It’s about living your life and following the model given to us by the greatest Love (v) teacher who ever lived …” To that point, Sheldon cited John 15:13: “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down his life for his friends.”

In addition to advocating Love (v) to others, Sheldon walks the walk. He outwardly displays our eight Attributes of Love (v) in his daily interactions with our CAREGivers and support staff, who are invited and encouraged to reach out to him to discuss personal and professional matters that may be weighing on their hearts and minds, from marital issues and financial matters to workplace conflicts and even the loss of a client.

Sheldon comes to Home Instead with 25+ years of experience in the pastoral ministry, most recently serving at a local church in De Pere, Wis. He and his wife have two grown children, both of whom live out of state pursuing burgeoning careers. In their free time, Sheldon and his wife enjoy spending time together outdoors and staying active; in fact, Sheldon has competed in 12 marathons … and counting!


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