Counting Blessings Every Day – Practicing Gratitude

Gratitude is essentially about counting all the good things. When we practice it we are simply recognizing our material and spiritual riches. It is often when we take time to reflect on whatever it is that we have that we learn to appreciate our life. From both a spiritual and scientific perspective, counting blessings has a lot of beneficial effects. Studies suggest that it can boost mood, promote wellness, and improve wellbeing. As such, we all stand to benefit if we learn to count our blessings every single day. If there is one song about gratitude that resonate with me, it would be this:

Count your blessings
By Johnson Oatman, Jr.

When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.

Count your blessings, name them one by one;
Count your blessings, see what God hath done;
Count your blessings, name them one by one;
Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.

Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, ev’ry doubt will fly,
And you will be singing as the days go by.

Count your blessings, name them one by one;
Count your blessings, see what God hath done;
Count your blessings, name them one by one;
Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.

When you look at others with their lands and gold,
Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold;
Count your many blessings, money cannot buy
Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high.

Count your blessings, name them one by one;
Count your blessings, see what God hath done;
Count your blessings, name them one by one;
Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.

So, amid the conflict, whether great or small,
Do not be discouraged, God is over all;
Count your many blessings, angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.

Count your blessings, name them one by one;
Count your blessings, see what God hath done;
Count your blessings, name them one by one;
Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.

Baptist Hymnal, 1991

Daily Habits for Spiritual Growth

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Faith is not something I pull out of the proverbial hat only when convenient or needed. I have to constantly work on it. And that means taking care of my spiritual growth. Nurturing the soul is not easy when I am confronted with all the responsibilities I have to juggle at any given day. It often feels like there is never enough time for it when I have a lot on my plate I need to do or fix. But creating habits out of the things that have helped me

Start the day with a prayer

Prayer is a form of meditation for me. I find that doing this before I start my day leaves me feeling more positive about my day. It also focuses me on the important things in my life. This can be quite helpful on days when it seems harder to accomplish the things I set out to do. It also helps put my faith in the forefront of my mind before everything else unfolds.

Make a gratitude list

The bad days make me feel like I have nothing to be thankful for. And it is a depressing thought to have. I counter the negativity by building on this habit of listing down my blessings every single day. Right after or before I do my prayer, I write down on all the things I think I should be grateful for. Sometimes I am surprised with what I can come up with. If we just really take the time to do this every day, we might be a lot happier.

Read something inspirational

I read something that inspires me. It could be a passage from a bible or a chapter or two of a book I am currently reading. For me, the best time to do this is in the morning soon after I am done with my prayer and the gratitude list. I consider this as fuel or food for my soul. I prefer to start my day with something that uplifts me. It is like I am gearing up for whatever it is that lie ahead in my day.

Focus on one thing at a time. Multitasking tends to stress me out. And the more stressful I get, the more tempting it gets to ignore the things I have built around my faith. Focusing on one thing makes me more efficient. It also leaves me clearheaded and spiritually calm.