The Passionate Listener

“I will give thanks to the LORD because of his righteousness and will sing praise to the name of the LORD Most High.” – Psalm 7:17 NIV

Most mornings go a little like this…

Beeeeeeeeep Beeeeeeeeep Beeeeeeeep Beeeeeeeep

Oh, shoot, is it time to get up already?!?!?!?! Just a couple more minutes…



After about 3 snooze hits, you get up and rush around the house to get ready for whatever it is you have planned for the day, whether it’s work, school, gym time or getting your kiddos up and moving.

No matter what it is, it seems that many of us can say that we don’t make time for much else. I know that I don’t, or don’t most mornings. I have tried a little harder to truly plan out the morning and get a little God time in, but I am still in the baby steps of this new adventure.

But this morning, after reading a 5 minute devotional and heading to the gym for a 1 hour workout session, I came home and decided to listen to Craig Groeschel’s sermon on Staying Positive. The sermon I chose today was the Gratitude sermon. I thought I knew what I was getting myself into, but after listening for the first 5 minutes, God was kicking me straight in the teeth with truths about my life and how I am going about each day.

I am a complainer! And I know this, but after hearing it from the mouth of a pastor, it truly hit me where it hurts.

So many of us spend each day complaining about something, whether it’s the traffic or the coworker in the next cubicle or that our coffee isn’t hot enough or that it takes 3 1/2 minutes to get food from a fast food chain or that it’s too hot out or it’s too cold out or it’s too cloudy or too sunny or that work sucks or that we don’t have the newest iPhone or that our Wi-Fi isn’t working correctly. No matter what it is, we can find ourselves complaining about a lot of things throughout the day. We seem to be a country of entitlement and that everything should be exactly how we want it and happen exactly when we want it too.

Why are we like this?

What about all the good things that we have?

Such as the clothes on our backs, a roof over our head, a meal to eat at least 3 times a day, a car with gas to drive, our family and/or friends, and just plain being alive?

We take so many things for granted and we complain about the stuff that we do have because it just isn’t “good enough” for us. And yet, there are many people who would die to have what we have.

But you know what, many of those people who do not have what we have, who do not have a single pair of shoes to their name or even one cent, have more gratitude and happiness than we do as “wealthy”, “healthy” and “well-off” Americans.

And you know why that is?

Because it’s “not happy people who are grateful, it’s grateful people who are happy.” (as quoted by Craig Groeschel)

If we waited until we were happy to give thanks for the things that we have or enjoy, then we probably never would because we always feel we need more. We feel that we should be entitled to more and to have better things. That is the wrong attitude.

We as Americans need to change our attitude of entitlement, to an attitude of gratitude.  And with an attitude of gratitude, we become happier and we are happy with and accept our “things” as enough because we realize that they all are a blessing from God. Everything that we have, whether it’s physical property, physical health, people, jobs, food or money, we can be happier if we show gratitude for all those blessings God has bestowed upon us!

I have to say that even though I write these words, I know that I am guilty of complaining rather than being grateful. I am guilty of having a negative attitude rather than thinking positively and knowing that no matter what, things will be ok because I have Jesus. I am guilty of being unhappy because I do not have the things I want or that I believe I should have rather than thanking God for what I do have and for who He created me to be.

What are you letting take away your happiness?

What are you truly grateful for, but never seem to actually thank God for?

I know of many things…and I know that each and every one of these things is because God has provided them for me and if I didn’t have them; my life would be in shambles.

I am blessed.

And because I am blessed…

I am grateful.

And because I am grateful…

I am happy!

So take today and reminisce on what you are truly blessed to have in your life…then thank God for them. The more we thank God for all the things we DO have, we realize that really do have enough!!

Go ahead! What are you waiting for….THANK GOD FOR SOMETHING!!!!




Tara Neidert

Tara is single and lives in North Canton Ohio with her 9 year old Boston Terrier, Zoe. She grew up in the small town of Hartville with her parents and two brothers. She is a registered nurse and an avid “Bootcamper” at her local gym. She enjoys spending time with family and friends, attending Bible studies, accountability groups and serving on team for The Walk to Emmaus and at her local church. She is also a sports fanatic and a huge lover of Christian music. She has attended many concerts, but her love for Fireflight has landed her at 40+ concerts. Many of her friends would describe her as loyal, faithful, determined and steadfast. Tara understands the hardships of living as a Christian and seeking God’s Will for ones life. It’s been a constant struggle, but she knows that “God doesn’t call the prepared, He prepares the called.”


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