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We all know it is good to stop and smell the roses every once in a while—to pause and realize how much we have be grateful for. But did you know that gratitude is essential to success? If you can’t appreciate what you have to be thankful for right now, it is harder to achieve what you desire in the future.

In fact, gratitude changes the brain and body for the better! Research on the effects gratitude has on our biology shows how being thankful increases our longevity, our ability to use our imagination, and our ability to problem-solve.

Gratitude makes us feel that life is worth living, which brings mental health benefits in a positive feedback loop that leads to more resilience—the ability to bounce back quicker during hard times. Gratitude is therefore essential to overcoming difficult circumstances and achieving success in all areas of your life!

What are some ways you can develop a “gratitude mindset”?

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You may not think you deal with fear at all, but let me point out that in today’s vernacular, we often cover up the word “fear” with other words. “I’m worried about the economy.” “I’m anxious about my kids.” “I’m getting a little uptight about this.”

No matter how you say it, fear is at the root of these emotions.

As human beings, we tend to be afraid of a variety of things. We fear failure. We fear looking silly in front of others. We fear rejection. We fear things that have to do with our image. We fear not having enough money to pay the bills. We are potentially afraid of just about everything that goes on in our daily lives.

Some people may say that a little fear is a good thing, but I disagree. Whenever fear is in your life, you will be filled with agitation, torment, and unrest—none of those sound like good things to me!

Fear is one of the enemy’s strategies to generate disquiet in your life. If you are constantly agitated, uptight and angry, paranoid about what might happen to you, filled with unforgiveness, resentment, or bitterness, you’re living in hell on earth. With fear in your life, you will never sustain the rest and peace of God—two things that make life worth living.

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Have you ever been mad at God? Certainly, everyone has had anger rise up against a person. And there are a lot of people who are angry with themselves. Anger is a problem all of us have to deal with.

Many people come from backgrounds where strife was just normal. Our culture is so full of envy and strife that it’s become part of life. We don’t realize how deadly it is. But realize it or not, strife will kill you. Listen to what James had to say about envy and strife:

“For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work.” (James 3:16)

Think about what this verse is saying for a moment. Envy and strife bring EVERY evil work. That is quite a revelation! You could be giving tithes and offerings and trusting God in the area of your finances, but if you’re living in strife, you are opening the door to poverty. You could be trying to take care of your body and meditating on healing scriptures, yet envy and strife will negate all of that and bring sickness and disease. No one who is trusting God for victory in any area of their life can ignore dealing with anger and expect to succeed. It’s that important.

This doesn’t mean we are supposed to be emotionless or totally passive people. There is a proper use of anger. If we don’t understand this and try to completely do away with anger, we will not succeed, and we will become passive in a way that allows Satan to run over us. There is a godly purpose for anger.

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The online ministry of cfaith has been helping people discover faith, friends and freedom in the Word since 2000. Cfaith provides a unique and comprehensive collection of faith-building resources for the worldwide faith community.

At cfaith, you can strengthen your faith and deepen your understanding of the Word of God by digging into the vast collection of teaching articles, streaming audio and video messages, and daily devotionals. No other website offers such a unique and extensive collection of spiritual-growth resources aimed at helping you grow in your knowledge of the Word.

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