Pastor George on the importance of counting your blessings as the year draws to a close.
The importance of counting your blessings
We are creatures of hope – a quality we need so that we can count our blessings in life, even when things don’t go your way. We need it not just to survive, but to thrive and blossom into our full potential. The beginning of a year affords us the luxury of putting the past behind and looking ahead to exciting and better days. But, no matter how strongly we hope and resolve to do, bad things find a way of happening to us, our loved ones and communities.
As we draw closer to the end of the year, the odds start to stack up against us – hopes unfulfilled, disappointments, break-ups, loss of income, etc. Before you realise it, hope turns into despair, and positive expectations into darkness.
Since we cannot immunise ourselves against bad things, we must develop a plan of action in order to beat the odds. The strategy is revealed in an old hymn titled Count your blessings, written by Johnson Oatman in 1897. The writer proposed that if you count your blessings rather than obstacles, you will be surprised at how blessed you truly are.
Humans have an inherent weakness that is also strength; we cannot focus on two things at once. In spite of having two eyes, you cannot make one look up and the other down. If you are counting your pains or losses, you are taking your blessings for granted. Focusing on your challenges blinds you to your blessings.
You are more blessed than you care to admit. If you are reading this, you are blessed with good eyesight (or reading glasses!). Even if you’re being read to, you are blessed to have that person in your life, and the ability to hear. Your job may not be the best, but it keeps you one step away from poverty, homelessness, etc. By counting your blessings, you find great joy in the little and big things.
Choosing to focus on your blessings will bring you hope, joy and a renewed strength to keep going until change comes.
The resultant positive thoughts and feeling will do wonders for your mood, behaviour, relationships and health.
Do not compare yourself negatively to those who have what you lack. Instead, imagine those who possess less, with far more stacked against them than you will ever know. No matter how badly you think you have it, someone will give anything to have your life.