What are you grateful for? (Max Pixel/Public Domain)

Are you feeling thankful today? Would you like to be overflowing with thanksgiving a few minutes from now?

It's normal for us as Christian leaders to be thankful in our theology, but to overlook expressing it in our lives.

When you think about it, you're thankful. But how often does thankfulness cross your mind and heart?

Especially when times are tough. Billy Graham gets that:

"A spirit of thankfulness is one of the most distinctive marks of a Christian whose heart is attuned to the Lord. Thank God in the midst of trials and every persecution."

Here is a prayer guide that is your tool for renewing a thankful heart.

Pray these Scriptures about thankfulness to:

  • affirm God's call to be thankful
  • express your thankfulness to Him because he is God and because he is good
  • be thankful in your circumstances
  • remember to be thankful for the people around you
  • practice a thankful heart.

You may choose to work through this prayer guide in your time alone with God. Or you may use it with your family and friends at
your Thanksgiving table, or with your congregation or church leaders.

1. Affirm God's Call to be Thankful

1 Chronicles 23:30

They were also to stand every morning to thank and praise the Lord. They were to do the same in the evening...

Psalm 95:2-3

Let us come before him with thanksgiving
    and extol him with music and song.
For the Lord is the great God
the great King above all gods.

Lord, I am thanking you right now because ...

2. Give Thanks to the Lord because He is God

I Chronicles 29:13

Now, our God, we give you thanks,
    and praise your glorious name.

Psalm 7:17

I will give thanks to the Lord because of his righteousness; I will sing the praises of the name of the Lord Most High.

Psalm 9:1-2

I will give thanks to you, Lord, with all my heart;
    I will tell of all your wonderful deeds.
I will be glad and rejoice in you;
    I will sing the praises of your name, O Most High.

Psalm 35:18

I will give you thanks in the great assembly;
    among the throngs I will praise you.

Psalm 69:30

I will praise God's name in song
    and glorify him with thanksgiving.

Lord, you are worthy and I am thankful because...

3. Now Give Thanks to the Lord for He is Good

1 Chronicles 16:34

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
    his love endures forever.

Psalm 100:4-5

Enter his gates with thanksgiving
    and his courts with praise;
    give thanks to him and praise his name.
For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;
    his faithfulness continues through all generations.

Psalm 106:1-2

Praise the Lord.
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
    his love endures forever.
Who can proclaim the mighty acts of the Lord
    or fully declare his praise?

Psalm 107:8-9

Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love
    and his wonderful deeds for mankind,
for he satisfies the thirsty
    and fills the hungry with good things.

Psalm 118:19-21, 29

Open for me the gates of the righteous;
    I will enter and give thanks to the Lord.
This is the gate of the Lord
    through which the righteous may enter.
I will give you thanks, for you answered me;
    you have become my salvation.

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
    his love endures forever.

Psalm 136: 1

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good.
His love endures forever.

Lord, you have been good to me and I am thankful. Thank you for ...

4. Be Thankful in your Circumstances

Psalm 106:47

Save us, Lord our God,
    and gather us from the nations,
that we may give thanks to your holy name
    and glory in your praise.

2 Corinthians 4:15

 All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God.

2 Corinthians 9:10-11

Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.

Philippians 4:6-7

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

1 Timothy 2:1-2

I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior...

Hebrews 12:28-29

Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, for our "God is a consuming fire.

Lord, I am thankful that you are in the middle of my circumstances, even in....

5. Thank God for Those Around You

1 Corinthians 1:4

I always thank my God for you because of his grace given you in Christ Jesus.

Ephesians 1:15-16

 For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all God's people, I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers.

Philippians 1:3

 I thank my God every time I remember you.

Colossians 1:3-4

We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, because we have heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love you have for all God's people—

I Thessalonians 1:2-3

We always thank God for all of you and continually mention you in our prayers. We remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.

2 Thessalonians 1:3

We ought always to thank God for you, brothers and sisters, and rightly so, because your faith is growing more and more, and the love all of you have for one another is increasing.

Philemon 4-5

I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers, because I hear about your love for all his holy people and your faith in the Lord Jesus.

Thank you, Lord, for the people around me who ...

6. Practice a Thankful Heart

Ephesians 5:18b-20

Instead, be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Colossians 2:6-7

So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.

Colossians 3:15

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.

Colossians 4:2

Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

 Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.

I am thankful, right now, Lord Jesus. Help me to remember to be thankful tomorrow when ...

Hal Seed is the founding and lead pastor of New Song Community Church in Oceanside, California. He mentors pastors who want to lead healthy, growing churches with resources at pastormentor.com.

This article originally appeared at pastormentor.com.

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