Thought for the Week

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Have you ever been told by someone to count your blessings? What good would it do? People can say this without really knowing what they’re saying. They might think it is just a nice thing you say to help a person get a grip of things or pick themselves up in some way.

As I write this article I am at a conference in London within walking distance of the recent fire. I am surrounded by other ministers. Two things can happen at these types of events especially when microphones are pushed in front of people. One thing is a lot of boasting and the second is a lot of complaining. The real question which is in my mind is this, is there a lot of honesty?

The Bible teaches wisdom on this point. One psalm says, “Whoever is wise, let him consider the steadfast love of the Lord”. Why would this help us? If we consider our health, work, rest, social life, we should ask if we are entitled to any of these. Can a belief in the universe randomly appearing without any god justify any expectation in blessing from it? Yet we all feel hard done by when these blessings are removed. Most children prove this by showing they claim it unfair to be sent to bed instead of being allowed to sit up and watch television. If you spend some time reflecting on what is a blessing in your life you will find the list bigger than you realise. You will see you are not blessed from a soulless universe but from a loving God. You will be thinking about God’s steadfast love. When we accept this we can live a life that is on its way to being less prone to boasting or complaining and more prone to thanksgiving to God. Saying “count your blessings” stops being an empty phrase and becomes one full of meaning.