When does something become a tradition? Since I’ve been doing the 21-Day Thankfulness Challenge for each of the last three years, does “4th Annual” make the cut? I’m adding a couple new twists this year (and keeping the parts you told me you liked).
Last year was the first year we offered printable Scripture cards!. They seemed to be a hit, so we’re doing it again.
FREE Printable templates with all 21 Thankfulness Scriptures!
There are 3 Sizes:
- A PDF file with all 21 images as printable POSTCARDS.
- A PDF file with all 21 images as printable BUSINESS CARDS.
- All 21 images as printable 4″x6″ photos.
NOTE: As I have done in the past, I have included the first seven images at the bottom of this post and will include seven images each week. You can certainly save these and use them however you wish. I will also be sharing one each day on my Facebook Page. The easiest way to share them is to like my page and share them right from your news feed.
In case you’re new the 21 Day Thankfulness Challenge…
I first had the idea for the challenge a few years ago. Honestly, the idea came during a time when it was difficult to be thankful. In fact, all you have to do is look at the news to find reasons to not be thankful. That’s when I had this thought…
We should all take this thankfulness challenge not because we want to do it. We should take the challenge because we need to do it.”
When I look at much of what’s happening in my city, my country, and around the world, I don’t feel thankful. There are many, many things that are not “thankfulness-worthy.”
You know. Things like…
- Another divisive, negative election season.
- Another devastating natural disaster.
- Another shooting.
- Another piece of bad medical news.
I want to complain. I don’t want to be thankful.
That’s why I’m doing this. That’s why I need this thankfulness challenge. Will you join me?
The challenge is simple.
Step 1: Commit to five minutes every day for the next three weeks. (In case you’re not looking at a calendar, that’ll take you to Thanksgiving morning.)
Step 2: Spend one minute being thankful in each of five categories. (More on that a few inches down.)
Step 3: Share something you are thankful for (that God brought to mind during your five minutes) on my Facebook Page in the comments below the daily Thankfulness Scripture Picture – or with a friend who is also doing the challenge. BTW…When you share on Twitter or Facebook, would you use #ThankfulnessChallenge so I can follow along? Thanks.
That’s it. Not complicated. But so necessary.
5 Types of Thankfulness for One Minute Each
Thank God for WHO He is.
“Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good!” Psalm 118:1 NLT
When was the last time you simply thanked God for who He is? For being…well…God.
Take one minute to focus on one characteristic of God. Or maybe spend a minute listing as many of God’s amazing attributes as you can.
Thank God for HOW He has been faithful.
“I will give thanks to you, Lord, with all my heart; I will tell of all your wonderful deeds.” Psalm 9:1 NIV
I forget so quickly. God has done so many amazing things in my life over the last four decades. My tendency is to forget the many things He has done, and focus only on what He’s not doing right now that I think He should be doing.
For all their flaws, the Israelites did a pretty good job of setting aside times specifically to remember. Most of the times they messed up, it was when they weren’t doing this. In fact, many of the Psalms are poems of gratitude for what God has done. (For starters, check out these Psalms: 26, 28, 56, 75, 100, 105, 106, 107, and 118.)
Thank God for WHAT He has provided.
“…always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Ephesians 5:20 NIV
A while back, I was chatting over coffee with a good friend. He and I got to talking about how we live in a “Culture of More.” We always think we need more. More stuff. Even when we know we don’t need more…we want more.
I don’t spend enough time thanking God for what I already have. Being grateful for the abundance of “stuff” (both necessary stuff and just-for-fun stuff).
Never is the “Culture of More” shouting more loudly than November and December. Spending even one minute every day being grateful for what we already have is probably a pretty good idea.
Thank God for WHOM He has put in your life.
“We always thank God for all of you and pray for you constantly.” I Thessalonians 1:2 NLT
My single-most favorite characteristic about the Apostle Paul is how much he tells people he is thankful for them. He doesn’t stop at telling them he’s thankful. He tells them he’s praying for them. And he tells them exactly how he’s praying for them. How cool is that?
When was the last time you took an inventory of the people you’re thankful for? Past and present. The people God has used to shape you, encourage you, challenge you, comfort you, and inspire you.
Now (and this part will take more than a minute), what would happen if you actually wrote a letter where the first line was “I thank my God every time I remember you…”? (Philippians 1:3)
Go ahead. Write at least one of those this month. I triple-dog-dare you! (Extra points if you put that movie reference in the comments below.)
Thank God for WHERE He will show up in the future.
Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised.” Romans 4:20-21 NIV
Do you ever thank God in advance for what He’s going to do? My tendency is to thank Him for what He’s done, but only ask Him to do something in the future.
If He’s not bound by time (which He isn’t)
…and He can do anything (which He can)
…and He is good (which He is)
…and He always works for what is ultimately best for us (which He does)
…then doesn’t it seem like the most right and natural thing is for us to thank Him in advance for whatever He is going to do?
A Couple New Twists
I’m including my family.
With the craziness of sports schedules, jobs, different start times for schools, and my own travel schedule, I’m not sure we’ll hit every day. However, Kari and I talked this morning about sitting down as many days as possible and spending these “Five Thankful Minutes” together. Some days we’ll do it out loud. Some days we’ll do it silently…but together.
I’m really excited about this!
I’ll be doing a few VIDEO moments of thankfulness.
Sometimes it will be on Instagram. Sometimes on Facebook. Sometimes they’ll be “live.” Sometimes they’ll be recorded. I might even post a few to my YouTube channel.
Honestly, I’m not sure what this is going to look like. I just had the feeling that it might be good to speak my thankfulness. So…I’m going to give it a shot.