Gratitude is a choice.
We can choose to be grateful or we can choose to live our lives full of complaints, entitlement and ingratitude.
In looking at how grateful people live their lives and how ungrateful people live their lives, we begin to see certain habits and attitudes that each category of people hold.
I’m taking these ideas for the 7 habits of ungrateful people from the book 40 Days to a Joy-Filled Life by Tommy Newberry.
7 Habits of Ungrateful People
“Gratitude is a conviction, a practice, and a discipline.” Tommy Newberry
1. Ungrateful people are disconnected from God.
If we are disconnected with God, if we aren’t communing with Him daily…through His Word, through prayer, through fixing our eyes upon Him, we aren’t experiencing that intimacy with the Father. When we spend time with Him, He gives us peace. He gives us more of Himself. We can’t help but be grateful.
2. Ungrateful people are surrounded by excessive noise.
Is your life to busy and bombarded with modern culture and all that entails? Constant connection, over-commitedness, too many obligations, looming deadlines…all at the touch of our fingers on our smart phones that we carry everywhere we go.
3. Ungrateful people overindulge in media.
This point goes along with number 2 as well, but the author goes on to mention watching the news. Over-reading the newspaper, watching excessive television. These things aren’t good for our souls. They aren’t filling us up. They aren’t helping us to think about whatever is true, noble, right and lovely. The author isn’t suggesting we must all get rid of our TV’s to be grateful, however, what if we started with a little LESS. What if we will our minds with what is true, noble, lovely and admirable…those things help us to be more grateful.
4. Ungrateful people feel entitled.
I read a whole book on how our culture is raising a generation of entitled children. This book was excellent for giving practical tips. We should also realize that as adults, we are just as prone to be entitled as well. Do you feel that someone owes you? That you deserve something? “Gratitude expands joy, entitlement shrinks it.”
5. Ungrateful people predict the worst.
Some of us tend to be drawn toward the negative. When my husband is 10 minutes later than usual coming home, I think the worst, he’s had a wreck…he’s on the side of the road…you know the story line. However, we can RE-TRAIN our brains and minds! We can LEARN to take every thought captive! I’m a work in progress, this is a journey! I’m so thankful that God is taking me on this journey of learning to see Him in it all and be grateful. “You cannot worry and be grateful at the same moment.”
6. Ungrateful people suffer from Continuous Deficiency Syndrome.
We seem to be always be aware that we could have more. We need more of this. We want more of that. Life would be better if we had more of this. We could have more money. We could be skinnier. Our kids could be better. And on and on and on. We must consciously counteract these thoughts with gratitude. “Ingratitude leaves us in a state of deprivation…” but gratitude helps us to feel like we have enough.
7. Ungrateful people rush to get the first piece of the pie.
Do you often think that if you don’t get to something first it will be gone? This scarcity mentality leads to ingratitude and complaining. God’s creation isn’t limited. He has a good plan for your life. Someone else isn’t going to fulfill YOUR destiny that God formed in you before you were ever born.
So, my challenge for us is to take these habits of ungrateful people and turn them around. Let’s be intentional about GRATITUDE. Let’s stay connected to God. Let’s turn off our phones and the news now and then. Let’s remind ourselves of our blessings and that we are living a life better than we deserve. Let’s hope for the best. Let’s trust God more than our feelings and more than our worries. Let’s remind ourselves that we aren’t deficient bu that we are more than conquerors through Christ. Let’s tell our hearts that Jeremiah 29:11 is TRUTH and that God has a good plan and purpose for our life. No one else can fulfill that purpose because they have gotten there first. There is enough of God’s goodness and faithfulness to go around.