Last night our step study group of men did the chapter on GRATITUDE and started into the next lesson which is GIVE. We will end this study next Tuesday. It was awakening once again to go through this lesson on Gratitude. We have addressed all of one’s areas of need by now which has focused each member of the group on all of their negative behaviors, beliefs, lies, hurts, hang-ups and habits. We have not only addressed them, but built plans to step out of them and maintain staying out. So, now it is time to be grateful.
As I started my devotions this morning, wouldn’t you know that the topic of my devotional is: Praise Opens the Door. A quote from it says: “Faith and complaining cannot live together…. You will either have great faith and gratitude, or you will have great doubt and complaining. Choose to praise and watch as your faith increases.” This really hit home for me. Last night I was helping the men see the critical importance of gratitude now that they have so much more freedom in their living. This morning God was wanting me to apply this same practice to my beliefs in starting our counseling program. I continuously have doubts wanting to attack my mind and emotions. That fact that we only have 3 new cases who have reached out for help makes me want to think there is something wrong. Well, God is pointing out that “the something wrong” is reacting to these thoughts as truths rather than simply man’s response to addressing each one’s deep need/s. Allow time for God’s Spirit to work in the heart of his people. This was true 15 years ago when we started Celebrate Recovery. Now 15 years later there is never a question about its worthwhileness.
My scripture reading is James and he starts his book addressing our faith. God is tying all of this together. Be grateful for all He is doing and even what I cannot see that He is doing. At the same time, have faith that He has not led me astray. Let my faith be strong knowing this God I serve is continuously working. I know this well, but I want to strengthen my acting on what I know. Thank you Jesus for this great reminder!