Day 18 of the Overcoming Fear Challenge

Deepening Our Faith by Showing Gratitude

piccinni roland opera

 

Our faith is deepened when we express gratitude for what we have. spending some time in a gratitude journal helps. However, too often maintaining it can become unfruitful or even nonexistent. We begin doing things like writing in gratitude journals and then one of three things happen.

1. Another thing that happens is that before we develop the habit, we stop doing it because other priorities took its place. That’s why it is very important to begin creating small habits that involve very little commitment to do them. It is counterproductive to beat ourselves up for not spending a lot of time right at the beginning thanking our creator for his many wonderful it is much better to be grateful for the time that we did offer thanks that day. Set your timer for 5 minutes and write thank yous until the timer dings and you’re done. Remind yourself when you finish that anytime you can see something to be grateful for, you will express your gratitude in some way.

2. As they become habit, they involve no emotional involvement and are simply something that we do because they are mindless habits.To mix things up and keep this from happening, in addition to writing a daily journal entry, a good idea is to include additional activities every month. This way we can further inspire our gratitude and deepen our faith.

Here are things we can do:

  • Do something for someone who you know can do nothing for you in return.
  • Recall the three most influential people in your life. Write a letter to them telling them how they have influenced you and how grateful you are of their influence. If that person has passed, write the letter anyway and burn it and imagine the smoke of that letter being received by that person.
  • Every day when negative influences enter your thoughts, somehow turn it around so that you see the silver lining in that storm of your life. Then express gratitude for that silver lining.
  • Look for ways that others are doing something nice for you and thank them for their service. It will not just make you more observant of things to be grateful for, but you might make someone else’s day in the process.

About the Author

2014-04-07 07.07.08Cygnet Brown has recently finished her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga Cygnet Brown resides in Springfield, Missouri.

Get a free copy of her newsletter and a free pdf copy of her e-booket: Vegetable Gardening in the Shade.

Day 18 Overcoming Fear Challenge ©2014 Donna (Cygnet) Brown

Day 17 of the Overcoming Fear Challenge

Develop Faith That Overcomes Fear

Faith is not something that once you get it you can put it in your wallet, stuff it into your back pocket and say that you have it. To have faith you must develop gratitude. You develop gratitude, you must work at making it a habit. The only real way to work at making gratitude a habit is to take the time for gratitude every day.

river meditation

I started a gratitude journal so that I will become focused on gratitude first thing every day. For fifteen minutes I focus on writing down all the things and that I am grateful for. This I do in addition to meditation, doing a Spanish lesson, yoga, and daily hygiene. It happens every day whether I feel like doing it or not.

It has not been easy for me being grateful every day. Since my last post, I lost my sister after she lost a year and a half battle against cancer. Less than six months ago, my brother died of a heart condition, and my father died from a stroke. I am older than both my sister and my brother who died and during the process I realized just how little I have done to accomplish those things that I know I am to do before I leave this life. I have a sense of urgency that I never had before. I have things to do, and I have a limited time to do them.

I think what I find that is difficult for me in having gratitude every day is that I have difficulty understanding why my sister who always seemed to have only kind words to say to people, who showed positivity every day of her life, should have died the painful death that she had to die. Yes, she was surrounded by family and friends and she was loved. The problem is, those family and friends who surrounded her are forever scarred over the hell she went through during her last days. I am having difficulty understanding how a loving God can let someone he loves suffer like that.

I know that gratitude is the right thing for building faith, but for me right now, it is a struggle.  I struggle everyday to remain grateful. It is very difficult for me. I can’t help but feel as though I am pitiful and unlovable. I have gotten to the root of my fear. The fear that I am not worthy of being loved by anyone including God and certainly not myself. I have not been faithful in giving the gratitude for what I have been given. I am not worthy. What scares me is the fact that if someone like my sister should suffer even when she was so friendly and so giving, then what chance to I have for ever being good enough or grateful enough. It is a hard thing to face, but definitely a fear to be reckoned with. I will not stop the struggle until this fear and the pain associated with it are no longer an issue.

About the Author

2014-04-07 07.07.08Cygnet Brown has recently finished her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga Cygnet Brown resides in Springfield, Missouri.

Get a free copy of her newsletter and a free pdf copy of her e-booket: Vegetable Gardening in the Shade.

Day 17 Overcoming Fear Challenge ©2014 Donna (Cygnet) Brown