A thankful heart opens the door to a vibrant relationship with Jesus. Jesus Calling®: 50 Devotions for a Thankful Heart brings the warmth and insight that more than 25 million people have enjoyed through Jesus Calling® in devotions curated specifically to help you see the blessings God has poured out on your life and help you develop a heart of gratitude.
Jesus Calling®: 50 Devotions for a Thankful Heart features 50 readings from Jesus Calling® gathered together in a new way and combined with relevant Scripture verses on the topic of thankfulness.
This book is part of a three-book series for teens, each focusing on a felt need. The other two books in the series focus on themes of growing your faith and dealing with busy days. These books are great for an individual study and make a great set for gift giving.
Readers around the world already love how Sarah's words connect with Jesus. Now the new Jesus Calling® topical devotionals offer a way to focus even more deeply on the major felt needs in your life . . . and the lives of your friends, family, church, school, and friends.
With a beautiful, classic cover and affordable price point, these topical devotionals are a natural addition to the Sarah Young brand—and the perfect way to pour into those you love.
About the Author
Sarah Young, the author of the bestselling 365-day devotionals Jesus Calling® and Jesus Always, has sold more than 25 million books worldwide. Jesus Calling® has appeared on all major bestseller lists. Sarah's writings include Jesus Calling®, Jesus Always, Jesus Today®, Jesus Lives™, Dear Jesus, Jesus Calling® for Little Ones, Jesus Calling® Bible Storybook, Jesus Calling®: 365 Devotions for Kids, and Peace in His Presence, each encouraging readers in their journeys toward intimacy with Christ. Sarah and her husband were missionaries in Japan and Australia for many years. They currently live in the United States.
Read an Excerpt
I LOVE THAT!
It is not possible to thank Me too much. I love your praises. Sometimes your praise is an unplanned, in-the-moment, you-just-can't-help-yourself sort of thing. Perhaps you have just received one of My blessings or have been overwhelmed by the beauty of My creation, and you are just bursting to tell Me about it. I love that!
Other times, you stop to think about My blessings, about My Presence in your life. And you decide to thank Me. I love that kind of praise too.
When you are struggling with a problem, pray about it. Then go ahead and thank Me for the help you know I will give you. This kind of praise means you know I am in control — and I love that!
Fill up the spare moments of your life with praise, and you will find that your life is filled with Me.
Psalm 22:3; Psalm 146:1–2
Give THANKS whatever happens. That is what God WANTS for you in Christ Jesus.
— 1 Thessalonians 5:18 (ICB)CHAPTER 2
try to see each day as an adventure, planned out by Me, your Guide. Instead of trying to make your day into what you want it to be, open your eyes to all the things I have prepared just for you. Each day is My precious gift to you — and you only have one chance to live it. Trust that I am with you every minute, working in your life. And then thank Me for this day — no matter what happens.
Expect surprises! When you live your life with Me, no day will ever be boring or predictable. Don't take the easiest path. Don't just get through the day. Live it! Be willing to follow Me wherever I lead. Even when My way seems scary, the safest place to be is by My side.
1 Peter 2:21
This is the DAY the LORD has made; let us REJOICE and be GLAD in it.
— Psalm 118:24CHAPTER 3
NO MORE BORING DAYS
Come to Me with a thankful heart. I have made this day for you so that you can enjoy My Presence in it. Don't worry about tomorrow. Rejoice in today. Look for the many blessings and miracles that I have put into this day. If you look for My Presence in your life, you will find it.
Come to Me with all your needs, big and small, knowing that I will take care of you. When you are not worried about what is happening in your life, then you are free to truly live. I want to give you that freedom. Turn your heart over to Me and I will fill it with peace and joy. And there will be no more boring days!
Psalm 118:24; Philippians 4:19
Do not worry about anything. But PRAY and ask God for everything you need. And when you pray, always give THANKS. And God's peace will keep your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. The PEACE that God gives is so great that we cannot understand it.
— Philippians 4:6-7 (ICB)CHAPTER 4
NO MORE COMPARISONS
I know that sometimes you doubt yourself. You worry what people think about you. You are afraid that you're not good enough. You think no one cares.
I want you to bring those fears and doubts to Me and let Me give you peace. Accept yourself as the person I created you to be. Don't wear yourself out comparing yourself to others. Instead, be thankful for how I made you, and trust Me as I guide you through this day.
As you learn to live with Me as the Center of your life, My Peace will fill you up. You will stop worrying about how you look and what other people think of you, because you will be too busy living the life I have planned for you.
Psalm 29:11; Numbers 6:24–25; Psalm 13:5
May the Lord WATCH over you and GIVE you peace.
— NUMBERS 6:26 (ICB)CHAPTER 5
STILL AND QUIET
It's tough to be still and quiet. There are so many things you could be doing — playing outside, talking to a friend, going to the game. But there are times when you have to be still — when you are sick, when you have finished your classwork, or when others need you to be quiet. Instead of wishing away this time, use it to listen for Me and to thank Me for My Presence in your life.
Some of My greatest work is done when you are still and quiet. That is when you can hear Me whisper to your heart.
Isaiah 30:15; 2 Corinthians 12:9
"Be STILL before the Lord."
— Zechariah 2:13CHAPTER 6
IT'S YOUR CHOICE
Trust and thankfulness. You hear those words a lot, but why are they so important to Me? Because they are the two things that you must have to stay close to Me.
When you trust Me, you are not worrying or trying to fix things yourself. You are keeping your eyes on Me, thinking about Me and what I want for you. When you are thankful to Me, there is no room for criticizing or complaining — those sins that can trip you up by tearing down other people.
Trusting and being thankful are choices that only you can make. And you'll have to make them every single day, many times a day. Just as with sports or math or any other skill, the more you practice, the easier it becomes!
Psalm 141:8; 1 Peter 5:7
As you RECEIVED Christ Jesus the Lord, so continue to live in him. Keep your roots deep in him and have your lives BUILT on him. Be strong in the faith, just as you were taught. And always be THANKFUL.
— Colossians 2:6–7 (ICB)CHAPTER 7
The alarm clock goes off and you bolt out of bed like a racehorse. You dash to the kitchen, wolf down some breakfast, and then it's out the door. You run, run, run through your day ...
Slow down! Did you yawn and stretch and thank Me for a healthy body that can get out of bed? Did you peek outside and see that beautiful sunrise I made for you? Did you thank Me for the food you ate? Or the home you live in? Or the people who love you?
Don't be so rushed that you forget to notice the blessings I fill your day with. Stop for a moment. Enjoy. Thank Me. Thankfulness not only pleases Me, but it also protects you from thoughts that make you sad. When you're thankful for the blessings all around you, you feel much happier. So slow down — and give thanks!
1 Thessalonians 5:18 (ICB)
Continue PRAYING and keep alert. And when you pray, always THANK God.
— Colossians 4:2 (ICB)CHAPTER 8
THE GIFT OF THE SPIRIT
I shower blessings down on you every day. Even when you don't notice them, they are there.
One of my greatest blessings is the gift of the Holy Spirit. He lives within you, teaching and guiding you.
The Holy Spirit is like a great multiplier. In math, five plus five equals ten. But five times five equals twenty-five — a much bigger result. The Holy Spirit works in much the same way. He takes your faith and multiplies it. You may start with a small bit of faith in Me, but the Spirit works to multiply it so that it grows much greater.
Be sure to thank Me for the gift of My Spirit. This helps Him to work more freely in you, making you even more thankful — and more joyful too!
2 Corinthians 3:17; Psalm 50:14
This is what God MADE us for. And he has given us the Spirit to be a guarantee for this NEW life.
— 2 Corinthians 5:5 (ICB)CHAPTER 9
A JOYFUL HEART
Rejoice! To rejoice in Me is to praise Me with joy and thankfulness. I love to hear you rejoicing. You can sing it. You can shout it. You can whisper it softly — or even pray silently. It doesn't matter how you do it; it matters only that you do it! Make this a new habit in your life.
When you rejoice in Me, I am lifted up — and I lift you up as well. Rejoicing tells Me that you know your blessings come from Me, and this makes Me want to bless you even more. I do My greatest works through people who have joyful, thankful hearts. So rejoice in Me always. In every situation. As you practice this habit of praise, your life will get better and better!
Psalm 95:1–2; Psalm 9:10
REJOICE in the Lord ALWAYS. I will say it again: Rejoice!
— Philippians 4:4CHAPTER 10
NO GRUMBLING, PLEASE
Grumbling and complaining are not what I want from you. When you grumble, you are telling Me that you don't like the way things are going in your life — that you hate My way of doing things. And when you complain, you are showing an ungrateful heart.
Thankfulness is your protection against the sins of grumbling and complaining. Being thankful also keeps you close to Me. So — when you have too much homework, when your parents give you an extra chore, or when I've said "not now" to one of your prayers — don't grumble or mumble under your breath. Instead, thank Me for the things that upset you. Before you know it, you will start to see those things differently. And you'll start to feel better too.
1 Corinthians 10:10; Hebrews 12:28–29; 1 Thessalonians 5:18
And DO NOT grumble.
— 1 Corinthians 10:10CHAPTER 11
OPEN YOUR EYES
I want your sacrifice of thanksgiving. But what does that mean? It means that I want you to put aside your favorite show, your MP3 player, your free time — and choose Me instead. I want you to put aside what you want for yourself for a while so that you can spend time with Me.
A sacrifice of thanksgiving also means that you are thankful, no matter what. If you choose to see only what is wrong, or what is making you unhappy, then your mind will be filled with dark thoughts. If you refuse to enjoy life until that problem is "fixed," you will miss out on My daily blessings of sunshine, flowers, friends — of life and salvation.
Come to Me with a thankful heart — always! Yes, even when something is wrong. Let My Light open your eyes to see the blessings I pour out upon you — day after day after day.
Genesis 3:2–6;1 John 1:7
I will OFFER you a sacrifice to show how GRATEFUL I am, and I will pray.
— Psalm 116:17 (CEV)CHAPTER 12
I have made this day for you. Be careful not to complain about anything in it — not your English test, not your frizzy hair, not even the weather — because I am the Creator of this day. Instead, decide to be happy today. Open your eyes, and choose to look for all the blessings I have hidden in this day.
Then live today — just today. Don't think about mistakes you've made in the past. Don't worry about what will happen tomorrow. You will only end up wasting today. I want you to enjoy abundant Life in My Presence — today!
Forgetting what is behind and straining TOWARD what is ahead, I press on toward the GOAL to win the prize for which God has called me HEAVENWARD in Christ Jesus.
— Philippians 3:13–14CHAPTER 13
EVEN WHEN YOU DON'T UNDERSTAND
Every day, every minute, every second, I want you to be filled with thankfulness — not with complaining. I am the Creator and the Controller of all the universe. Heaven and earth are filled with My Glory.
When you complain, you are saying that you think you could run the world better than I do. Things will happen that you don't understand. You ask "why?" and "why not?" But you do not know all the things that I know. You can only see today. I can see yesterday, today, and forever — all at the same time. I know how everything fits together.
Have faith in Me and trust that I will take care of you. Be thankful and praise Me — even when you don't understand.
Hebrews 13:8; 2 Corinthians 5:7; 1 Thessalonians 5:18
And they were CALLING to one another: "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord ALMIGHTY; the whole earth is full of his GLORY."
— Isaiah 6:3CHAPTER 14
SO MANY BLESSINGS
Let Me teach you how to be thankful. First, think about all the things you have to be thankful for — home, family, friends, food, clothes, stuff. Then, think about how each of these things is a gift from Me.
As the sun rises, remember that today is a gift from Me. As you get out of bed, think about the gift of a healthy body. As you gather up your schoolwork and prepare for the day, be grateful for your abilities and talents. Try to count the many good things I have filled your life with. Is it twenty-five? Fifty? One hundred? I dare you to try to count all My blessings.
The secret to being thankful is thinking about all the good things in your life — and then remembering that these are all gifts from Me.
Hebrews 12:29; Psalm 119:105
Therefore, since we are RECEIVING a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be THANKFUL.
— Hebrews 12:28CHAPTER 15
I AM GOOD
I am good. I am not just good one day and then not-so-good the next. I am always good. I will always do what is good and best for you.
And I am completely good. Not just mostly good, or 99.9 percent good. I am Light, and there is no darkness in Me — none at all!
So come to Me with a thankful heart. Be glad that your life is not at the whim of an imperfect God. Be grateful that you serve a perfect God who wants only the very best for you. Expect Me to take care of you. There is not a single thing you need that I cannot give you.
1 John 1:5
Let us come before him with THANKSGIVING and extol him with music and song.
— Psalm 95:2CHAPTER 16
DON'T BORROW WORRIES
Whenever your mind gets stuck on a problem, bring it to Me and thank Me for it. Ask Me to show you My way of handling it. When you do this, your mind is freed and the problem is robbed of its power to make you worry. Together, we will deal with your problem, either facing it right now or putting it aside for later.
You see, many of the worries that tangle up your mind today are actually ones that you have borrowed from tomorrow. Don't waste time worrying about whether or not you will make the team next year, or pass the class next semester, or even what you will do this weekend. Give those borrowed worries to Me and let Me put them in the future where they belong. Leave them there — out of sight — and I will replace them with My Peace.
"PEACE I leave with you; my peace I GIVE you."
— John 14:27(Continues…)
Excerpted from "Jesus Calling for Teens"
Copyright © 2017 Sarah Young.
Excerpted by permission of Thomas Nelson.
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