The Aim of Gratitude

I came across something twice during the week, and when it comes my way twice I pay close attention. On Friday, my meditation app had a session about loving and giving under conditions. Later on that night, my devotional from my Bible app talked about how we might be working hard for God so we can receive (fill in the blank). Both apps emphasized us loving someone because we know they will love us back or helping in a cause to make us feel better. Both apps emphasized loving and giving upon the condition that it will ultimately make us feel better. Is this the ultimate aim we should shoot for?
I reflected upon this myself and thought about when it comes to God, do I read my Bible, do things for the church, and help someone in need so I can feel better and earn God’s approval? Am I searching for a formula that says, “If I do exactly this, God will give me this and if I don’t get this I didn’t do the formula right.”? Honestly at times I would think this way and the outcome didn’t always turn out the way I thought it would.
So, why should I read my Bible, do good for others, and continue with my current job? The answer both apps gave was the expression of gratitude. The meditation app stated to do a good deed and keep it to yourself and don’t seek approval. Then you will notice a change of your attitude. My devotional took things further and said to do things out of the gratitude of what Christ has done for you and because of who He is. The act of gratitude prevents you from seeking out approval from others and to not seek a reward for your own gain. The job you have, God gave you the ability to do that particular job, praise him for that ability that he bestowed upon you. The children you have, they are a blessing from God in their good and bad moments, praise him for who they are and what they may become. Living here in America, yes, America as messed up as we think it is, is still a better place to live in than most places in this world. Praise God that you live here. Your health, praise God and be thankful that you can walk, talk, enjoy people and nature when you want to. I work with patients and know people currently who don’t have the ability to do some of these things. I could go on about all we should be thankful for, but I’ve already said quite a bit.
My main point is this, our lives should always be lived out of gratitude for what God has done, is doing, and will do. Not to seek out self validation or comfort on this earth. Don’t follow your heart alone, first follow God’s heart and He will reveal the true desires of yours. Love to my brothers and sisters near and far.😘💗