by Shauna Gallagher
Our journey of looking at ways to build resilience concludes by taking a look at three more areas that we can work on – gratitude, connection and praise.
‘Gratitude’ is a buzz word these days and having an ‘attitude of gratitude’ is purported to be amazing for your mental health. But this isn’t new research, the Bible speaks of it and was written long ago!
Whilst on the surface it seems like it would be an easy thing to grasp, I think in reality, true gratitude is something that we have to work on to achieve. Gratitude is not just about saying thank you. It is about feeling it too.
So how does gratitude build resilience? By strengthening the gratitude circuit in your brain, you improve your physical and mental health, contributing to improved resilience.
Let’s take a look at two verses that instruct us to be grateful:
Colossians 2:6-7 Be overflowing with thankfulness
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 Give thanks in all circumstances
That second one is a bit difficult to do, but practice makes perfect, so I encourage you to start.
As we move in to talking about connections and resilience, we need to be mindful that it isn’t about the number of connections you have, rather the quality of your connections. You may only have one or two close support people, but that’s enough to make you feel stronger. A verse in the Bible that supports connections is:
Hebrews 10: 25 And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.
The word ‘encourage’ means to make courageous. By gathering together, by having a support network, you can be made more courageous, and therefore more resilient.
Now for our last point – praise! There are various ways we can praise God, but with limited space, let’s just look at singing. Think about the lyrics of the songs you sing. The words describe that God is wonderful, mighty, powerful, king of kings, merciful, wise… and the list goes on. If you are singing those words and meaning it, then imagine the shield of resilience that is being built around you. If God is your Father, and He is so mighty and powerful and merciful, how much does that give you the ability to bounce back from the struggles you may be enduring. The following verse is part of a song that Moses and the Israelites sang to God.
Exodus 15:2 The Lord is my strength and my song, and he has become my salvation; this is my God, and I will praise him, my father's God, and I will exalt him.
Praising God is such a powerful tool in the fight to build your resilience.
As this series comes to a close, I want you to reflect on the six areas that help to build your resilience God’s way:
God knows we need Him to be able to bounce back from the struggles that are inevitable in this life. Trust there is a plan; trust that He loves you just the way you are; trust the boundaries that He gives us in His Word; continue to meet with other Christians; learn to be grateful/thankful in all circumstances and most of all, remember to praise the King of Kings!
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding.
But in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths.
Shauna is a Mental Health Nurse, author and speaker. She is very passionate about improving mental health through a Christian world view. Combining her career with her faith has helped Shauna to draw closer to God through seeing how intricately and beautifully He has designed our bodies. Shauna and her husband, John, have four adult children and two gorgeous grandsons. They minister at a church on the Sunshine Coast and are passionate about sharing God's love with their local community.
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