Wednesday, February 18, 2009


An emotion of the heart, excited by a favor or benefit received; a sentiment of kindness or good will towards a benefactor; thankfulness. Gratitude is an agreeable emotion, consisting in or accompanied with good will to a benefactor, and a disposition to make a suitable return of benefits or services, or when no return can be made, with a desire to see the benefactor prosperous and happy. Gratitude is a virtue of the highest excellence, as it implies a feeling and generous heart, and a proper sense of duty. ~Noah Webster

I always feel sorry for people who struggle with the outward expression of Gratitude.

The very action of saying “Thank-You”, and meaning it, opens the spirit to a true sense of appreciation. In giving thanks, something moves inside the center of our spirits and allows the wonder of what has been done for us to invade us.

I Am Not Sure We Really Receive Something Unless We Give Thanks For It!

Not the fullness of the gift. Not the treasure of it, its true value. Not what the giver perhaps planned for us to have and enjoy….. Not unless we Give-Thanks!

Gratitude Is Your Gift Back To A Giver…….

Of late Deb & I have been griped with an overwhelming sense of How Good God has been to us. Have you ever thought, perhaps God has me mixed up with someone who is really good and deserves these blessings?

What A Wonderful Savior!

What a Wonderful Church family at New Life.

Thank you for your faithfulness and prayers.

Deb & I Thank God for You Today!

See You In Church.

What are you “Grateful” For Today?

Who are you “Grateful” for?

How has God Blessed You?

Leave a comment below and share your gratitude.

When upon life’s billows you are tempest-tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.

Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.

Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, every doubt will fly,
And you will keep singing as the days go by.
~Johnson Oatman, Jr. 1897

For further Study on the subject of Gratitude click on the title below for a downloadable Bible study.

The Value of an Attitude of Gratitude


Bill and Christine Ekstrom said...

I really enjoyed today's blog. God has truly been good to me and I also often wonder if He just hasn't got me mixed up with someone else. I am so grateful for my salvation; that He didn't give up on me when I was lost and undone... I am grateful that I have two beautiful kids that I don't deserve... I am grateful for a husband who loves the Lord and believes and trusts in His provision... I am thankful for a church that stands on the truth of God's Word and does not alter, and for great Christian friends to learn, grow, minister and fellowship with! God has been SOOO good to me! Thank you Lord!
-Christine E.

Geoff and Tish said...

I really enjoyed today's blog and Selah. I have been blessed beyond anything that I could ever imagine. I am continually amazed at how GREAT God is. Even if things don't go the way I have planned them to go, I thank God anyways,because his plan is always better than what I want. I am thankful for the family that God has blessed me with and for a church where I am continually fed the truth! Thank you Lord for being so GOOD!

Nichole T. said...

Oh man, where do I start... I'm thankful for God'd Grace and Mercy. He saved me, forgave me, and changed who I was! I can honestly say, I WOULD NOT be here today, if it weren't for God's hand upon my life everyday I lived without Him. I am thankful for parents who prayed for me, friends who have been honest, Pastors who teach the Truth, and a husband who has been more than patient. I am beyond blessed to wake up every morning and spend my days with a beautiful, healthy, smart little girl, who makes life exciting! When I have felt overwhelmed...God has been my strength, when I have felt alone, and guilted by my sin God has forgiven me and been my comfort, when I have felt almost hopeless, God has stepped in and restored my vision. My life has had "highs", and has seen "lows", but ONE thing is for sure...He has been Faithful, and He has stayed the same, He has NEVER changed!!!

I love you Lord,
Thank you for making my life different.

Nichole T

Willie... said...

This is so amazing... that the theme of today's blog would be THANKFULNESS and GRATITUDE! \o/

Around the lunch table at work, today, we were discussing this very subject! (Most of my co-workers are not Christians, so I always look for appropriate ways to Witness to them.) We talked about how ungrateful so many people are these days, and how BLESSED the United States truly is!

I mentioned that there is a story in the Bible where Jesus healed 10 lepers, and only one of them came back to say "Thank You".

Now, I click on the link to the Bible Study for this blog... and there is a reference to that passage! That's so cool when God makes these little "God-Incidences" happen! \o/

It is also really cool that this message is posted TODAY, (2/19) because TODAY is my precious Bride's Birthday! \o/ Of all that which the LORD has blessed me, Kim is the one person for whom I am most thankful! \o/ There's no doubt He fashioned her from one of these ribs! ;)

Since the LORD is my Witness, I can say before one and all, that for YEARS, now, I have had a heart of thanksgiving. (Thanks to so much GOOD TEACHING!!)

Tonight's Bible study about CONTENTMENT also truly spoke to me! If I were to rate on a scale, my level of contentment, I would put it at about 75%! Seriously. :)

I look at my beautiful bride, and I thank the LORD for the 19+ years we have been married. \o/

I look at the fact that we are both still working full-time, and I rejoice. We have a cozy little house, and 2 reasonably good-running cars. We don't have an abundance of this world's goods, but we have ENOUGH. Food, shelter, clothing, family, friends, and most importantly, a truly BLESSED and Spirit-Filled Church where God meets with us and we are truly FED, spiritually! \o/

I am thankful that He provided this present job, so soon after my beloved job at WFIF came to an end. Even though there are times when I have to endure bad language or awful secular music, I know that I am here because God has appointed this time... and it is a good job that pays enough to keep us going. :)

I am thankful that God has enabled me to have a very good understanding of technology and how to fix things, etc.

I am thankful to have a special computer here in my house that is connected to one of those little "iPod" transmitters, so that I can hear Christ-centered music 24/7 just by turning on any nearby radio. :)

I pray for the day that we will get a full-power radio station in this area to fill these airwaves with Christ-Centered MUSIC! :)

(I will be attending a special meeting to discuss this very thing, NEXT Thursday, the 26'th! Thank you for praying!)

I am thankful for New Life, which I have been attending since late 1985! \o/

Oh, there are SO MANY MORE things I could list!! Sorry, Pastor Mark, that this is so long... but I really do have a LOT to say, because I have a LOT to be VERY, VERY thankful for! \o/

THANK YOU, LORD, for so many undeserved blessings!!! \o/

Since we know that GOD does NOT make mistakes... then we must realize that He is doing it on purpose! What a WONDERFUL thing to think about and REJOICE in!!! \o/ \o/ \o/ \o/ \o/

Linda Dzurenda said...

I grew up as a Catholic and had been one for the first 40 years of my life. I learned nothing about God's Word. A little over 3 years ago, My husband and I became "Born Again" right here in New Life. Thank the Lord! I am grateful for so many things. Too many to write. What I am MOST grateful for is that my young children(3) are all growing up in a wonderful church who does a phenomenal job in teaching them God's Word. Because of this, they are "God Conscious" and apply what they learn in their lives. This makes me the happiest. Seeing children being born and raised in families where the parents are saved, is the most wonderful thing.

Bob Arnzen said...

Great minds think alike……you know PM (Pastor Mark) I’ve been thinking and praying about Gratitude for some time now.

I am overwhelmed by God’s love for me despite....well ME. I am so amazed by His Love for me (us).

The new song we’ve been singing “Amazed”
( is’s’s Amazing. “You dance over me While I am unaware” (why is that Lord, why am I so preoccupied…) “You sing all around But I never hear the sound” (can you believe it...I pray Lord for better hearing) “Lord I'm amazed by You...Lord, I'm amazed by You, How You love me, Oh yes You do”.

“You paint the morning sky with miracles in mind”(oh God how I love Your miracles that I feel every day I wake up and walk into the lion's den...)

"My heart will always stand for You hold me in your hand” (Dear God thank you for HOLDING me, supporting me, lifting me above the craziness of life...)

"How deep, how wide, how great is Your Love for me" (yes me……I can’t believe it...I just can't believe it...)

I can never quit get the words out (and thank God that Jesus is making it very clear no matter how I groan and mumble and try to express my gratitude to our Father), it just never is expressed in a way that really gets across how much I am so thankful to a God who loved me before I loved spite of me. (Romans 5:10For if, when we were God's enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! 11Not only is this so, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation)

Romans 7: 21So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22For in my inner being I delight in God's law; 23but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. 24What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? 25Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!

Well Glory!!!!

Bob Arnzen said...

A Quick Shout Out of Gratitude to Sister Evans for being the epoxy...the glue and the miracle grow that holds together and nurishes those three messengers of God who make New Life an amazing home and haven here on this planet until we all go home on that day !!

God Bless You.....

cdemery said...

Pastor Mark, I first want to say
Thank you. Thank for the Selah's and now your Blog.

I am thankful for the power of the cross, for mercy and grace and the pardon that was multiply to me and for my burden soul that has found liberty. I thank God for Eugene, my children, grandchildren, my aging parents that have been blessed with good health. For my brothers and the multitude of friends that I have been blessed with.

I am blessed that even though we we are miles away, in North Carolina, that we can still share in your Bible Studies. We love and miss you all.

Love Eugene and Carmen Demery and Girls


Wow, great blog.Mary and I will be celebrating our 14th Wedding Anniversary on the 13th of May.We have had 12 good years.The two years before we knew Christ were not so good.I am scared to think where we would be without his wonderful saving grace.He has blessed our marriage, but has also blessed us with a great son who loves the Lord.


The Martini's

Bill T said...

I remember talking about this very subject right before we sat down to eat Thanksgiving dinner last year...And I will say what I said back then since it hasn't changed...I am grateful/thankful for my LIFE, and ALL that that word emcompasses for me! There isn't one thing that I would change about it(except to be a better man of God and grow more), My Lord & Saviour and salvation, my beautiful loving wife, my gorgeous little girl, my family, my church, my friends, my job, my home, my cars...and traffic.

This morning, I wanted to complain and get all bent out of shape about the traffic i was in...but i was reminded that i was in that traffic because I was going to a job that I was blessed with that pays my bills and makes much of my life possible. Just remember the next time you are stuck in traffic in the morning or evening hours, that you are there because you are coming or going to a job that the Lord blessed you with. "Be thankful IN everything" And then just remember to pray for the person in front of you to discover their RIGHT FOOT ! LOL...did you think i could be serious the whole blog ?!?! God bless...see you all Sunday.

john a. said...

thank you Lord for your mercy and grace, for our pastors and our elders that taught me you Word, to have a relation with you, LORD. as the song saids "God is good and his mercys endures forever".THANK YOU LORD FOR THE GIFT OF SALVATION. FOR EVERY GIFT THAT YOU GIVE US EVERY DAY. THANK YOU FATHER. John A.

Rick Vieira said...

I am blessed beyond measure!!!

I am grateful for so many things. All I have to do is open my eyes and pause ("take a chill pill") and I see so many of God's blessings.

I am grateful for...
...the beautiful lady laying next to me and her Godly character.
...for my little girl and the joy she brings.
...for the home I have and the comforts I get to enjoy each day.
...for my Pastors and friends at New Life and their benevolence.
...for my job and how it allows me to share God's love with young people.
...for God's grace and mercy showed to someone so underserving.
...for the One who gave it all.

Bob of New Life (ha, I've arrived) said...

Hey PM, powerful lesson this am....well having a son who's gonna be 12 u can imagine how many times I watched the Transformers movie,video game and I remember when the first website had a link where from the website you could have it call a friend's cell phone, in-put their name and they would get a call from Optimus Prime calling them by name, and giving them an urgent message that the end is coming and to be prepared...but do not be afraid...I don't know how many times he sent that to me....remember the story of how I transformed a Viper (not a Camaro) best forgotten.

You are right about being changed or's the one bridge that allows us to cross over from death to life....from light to darkness....from nothingness to "someoneness"....a sense of arriving into a safe haven with our Father and our Lord Jesus....WHEW !!!(with puffed cheeks and puckered lips)...dear Father !!

whew: Pronunciation [hwyoo]
–interjection 1. (a whistling exclamation or sound expressing astonishment, dismay, relief, etc.)
–noun 2. an utterance of “whew.”

LOL....too bad you can't do sound affects on the blog.....but "whew" is a great way to express, " man!, I can't believe I can have that kind of relationship and position (by His Grace) with God....

Romans 12
Living Sacrifices
1Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. 2Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

2 Corinthians 3:17-18
17Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 18And we, who with unveiled faces (He tore the veil, He made a way, when He said that it is done....) all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.

1 Corinthians 15:52
In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the [sound of the] last trumpet call. For a trumpet will sound, and the dead [in Christ] will be raised imperishable (free and immune from decay), and we shall be changed (transformed).

Thank you Father for touching my heart and mind...choosing me to be imprinted, branded and tatooed with a growing and insatiable need to seek your face, your will and favor in my life, knowing I am truly lost without YOU.

Thank you for Transforming me from what I was, in Jesus name...Amen.

Anonymous said...

I'm most grateful for:
1) a God of mercy
2) a tenacious grip of love for my "other half"; even when he screws up royally
3) grown kids. whew. If had had known then what I know now.


Bob Arnzen said...

hey PM, don't give up on the's a great way to fellowship in a small way when it's hard to get up there to my new life home during the week....I feel like I'm talking with and listening to my friends in Christ.

good selah today....ur so right, I may not have much or be much in the scheme of things in this big bad world, but I am more than a conqueror in the One who is with me all day long.....
Romans 8:37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. \o/ praise God

A shout out to PDJ and his bumb ham string...I pray u r feeling will ya....i pulled my pork loin once...LO really L, PJ is one funny dude.

\o/ \o/ \o/ \o/ \o/ \o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/\o/ 2 Chronicles 5:13
The trumpeters and singers joined in unison, as with one voice, to give praise and thanks to the LORD. Accompanied by trumpets, cymbals and other instruments, they raised their voices in praise to the LORD and sang: "He is good; his love endures forever."

Anonymous said...

I am eternally grateful for everything God has done for and continue to do for my family and I.

I look around me so often and see all the blessings that surround us, even when things seems dim, there is always a light at the end of the tunnel. Father in heaven I ask that you continue to bless us with your eternal blessing, help us not be selfish and to help those that need help with what you enable us to have, In Jesus name; Amen

Kathy Muniz said...

Hi Pastor Mark!!

Where do I begin on what I'm grateful for... that is a pretty long list!! I am so grateful to be saved. Life with Christ has been such an amazing journey for me, and I know it's only just begun. I've been saved for almost 2 years now and I truly have a "New "life". With Christ I know who I am, what I believe in and why I am alive, and that is to serve the Lord. Thank you, thank you, thank you God for not giving up on me and for giving me this amazing opportunity to have a relationship with you :)

Next on the list would definitely be my wonderful family that God has blessed me with. My wonderful husband... man it's good to be married to a man who loves the Lord! I have an amazing little girl who prays for people and never ceases to put a smile on my face :) My in-laws are awesome and my own family has been so great to me, so thank you God for them!!

I am also very, very grateful for my church family... you guys are the best!! Pastor Mark... you are the coolest Pastor by far :) Thanks for all of your hard work, for all of these blogs and Selahs and the website... you're truly a blessing and it's been so nice to share all of your work with my family and co-workers. You make it so easy to share God's word with other people, especially since I am a newer Christian. And thanks to Pastor Evans, Pastor Andy, Pastor Jason and Pastor Chris...don't want to leave any one out, you're all a blessing to every one of us. Thanks for helping us grow closer to the Lord!

I think what I have learned most from this blog and the reading is not only to be grateful for the things God has blessed me with but also to show my gratitude. So I've made a commitment to show my gratitude to the people who are in my life, and to also be a blessing to them.

I hope I haven't rambled on too long... I'm just so happy and grateful... and emotional since I'm pregnant :O) so I just wanted to send a big THANK YOU!!! to God and to all of you :)

God Bless,
Kathy Muniz

kronickwino said...

I was just having the conversation of family the other day. I am going through a rough time because my aunt is very sick and I don't have any family living near me in CT. But what I do have is a VERY supportive network of friends, Christian and non-christian alike. They are all there for me when I need them and just because. I am very grateful for them! I truly pray that the Lord will bless each one of them in a special way!

On a side note - this reminded me of Sunday Service:

although i think the message is backwards.....

Anonymous said...

I am thankful:
For the wife who says it's hot dogs tonight,
Because she is home with me, and not out with someone else.
For the husband who is on the sofa being a couch potato,
Because he is home with me and not out at the bars.
For the teenager who is complaining about doing dishes
Because it means she is at home, not on the streets.
For the taxes I pay because it means I am employed.
For the mess to clean after a party
Because it means I have been surrounded by friends.
For the clothes that fit a little too snug because it means I have enough to eat.
For a lawn that needs mowing, windows that need cleaning, and gutters that need fixing because it means I have a home
For all the complaining I hear about the government Because it means we have freedom of speech.
For the parking spot I find at the far end of the parking lot because it means I am capable of walking and I have been blessed with transportation.
For my huge heating bill because it means I am warm.
For the lady behind me in church who sings off key because it means I can hear.
For the pile of laundry and ironing because it means I have clothes to wear.
For weariness and aching muscles at the end of the day because it means I have been capable of working hard.
For the alarm that goes off in the early morning hours because it means I am alive.
And finally, for too much e-mail because it means I have friends who are thinking of me.
Live well, laugh often, & love with all of your heart!

Anonymous said...

Thank You God for the sacrifice at Calvary for me... thank You God for my wonderful husband who loves me as You've called him to... thank You God for Marcos and the gifts and talents You have given him and for his desire to want to use them for You... thank You God for Timothy who is our joy... thank You God for the Truth of Your Word which is preached week after week at my church... thank You Holy Spirit for Your presence and guidance and direction always... Father that I may never speak, do or listen without You!!
Di Orozco