For one day, let’s change the conversation.

There’s a lot of negative talk going around right now. It’s on the news. It’s on social media. It crops up in our day-to-day conversations. It’s easy to point out what everybody else is saying.

But today, on day six, I want us to look at the negative words that fall out of our mouths, even over the smallest things.

Not too long ago I went to lunch with friends. We stood near a couple and I couldn’t help but overhear their conversation. There was a wait for a table and he was frustrated. She said something positive about the restaurant. Bam. He replied with a negative. She talked about how nice it was to be out on a pretty day. Bam. He replied with a negative.

Pretty soon, she stopped talking.

As I watched this couple, I didn’t think this was a bad guy. I believe he had fallen into the trap of negativity and had no idea the damage it was doing.

It made me wonder.

How often do I do this without knowing it?

So, how do we change the conversation?

  • Listen to ourselves

It might be a habit. Maybe it feels normal. Regardless of why we do it, it’s worth listening to ourselves.

  • Is negativity my go-to?
  • How could I have said it differently?
  • Who gets the brunt of my negativity?

He who guards his mouth and tongue keeps his soul from distress. Proverbs 21:23 (Berea Study Bible)

  • Start the day with a thankful heart

As you start your day, think of one thing for which you are thankful.  Say your thankful thought out loud. I know that sounds “fluffy,” but there’s power in noticing the good.

Lord, I have a crazy busy day ahead of me, but I just want to say thank you for this warm bed. For that sweet kiss my little one just gave me. For the food in my refrigerator. Thank you for my health, for that breath I just took. 

When we begin our day with a thankful heart, negativity takes its rightful place from the beginning. We still have loads of laundry, or a huge task at work, or things that are hard. We aren’t pretending that those things don’t exist, but we don’t let the negative be the boss of us from the get-go.

[bctt tweet=”What I take for granted others are praying for. Lord, help me remember that today. #livingalifeofthankyou #livingfreetogether” username=”suzanneeller”]

  • Change the conversation with gratitude

When that negative word/response starts to come out, refuse it.

Give yourself permission to be honest, but also to be grateful for what is right in front of you. A few years ago I read a quote that stopped me in my tracks:

The things you take for granted are what others are praying for.  

When I read that, I asked God to help me remember this personally. I didn’t want to look back one day and realize that I had taken all my good gifts for granted.

I didn’t want loss to show me what I had, but to enjoy it while it was abundant. For right now there’s something valuable we may be taking for granted: good health, a relationship, that sticky toddler kiss, a roof over our head, the person standing next to us as we wait for a table. . .

We have the power to lean into the negative or use that same breath to express gratitude. It’s our choice.

So, today — all day, let’s practice thankfulness and strip negativity of its power. Will it be easy? Most likely, no. Will it change us? Yes, yes, yes.


Day #6 of Living a Life of Thank You

Finish this sentence:

Q: I’m thankful because . . . 

Share your thankful thought today with someone else. Maybe on social media. You might be surprised at how it changes the conversation.

Hey, just so you know, I’m thankful for you. ~ Suzie

Related Resource

The more we walk with Jesus, the more we reflect who he is. These are two resources to draw you deeper into a daily life-changing relationship with Jesus.

Come With Me: Discovering the Beauty of Following Jesus

Come With Me Devotional: A Year-Long Adventure in Following Jesus