How many treasures do we step over each day? How many times do we meh a present given to us for our enjoyment and the glory of the Giver? The ordinary fixtures in our lives become entitlements and we forfeit thankfulness. At least I do.
This morning as I drank my second cup of coffee, this realization hit me. I really like coffee and if you don't you're probably a communist and I don't trust you. But anyway...
So forgive the 'starving people in Africa' reference but think about how many people in the world do not have access to fresh ground coffee beans, clean water (!), and a heating element to heat up this divine concoction. Imagine the people working the coffee fields in various countries, hands calloused and bleeding as they work and pray that God will bring rain and sunshine to make their crops grow.
God sustains all of this. The whole system. He is a supply chain expert.
Now I don't know if God really wants us to make that big of a deal of how He brings us coffee, but I do think He wants to offer us thankfulness.
...give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. (1 Thessalonians 5:18)
If God is all powerful, all loving, and all knowing - and He is - then all circumstances are opportunities for thankfulness. Our Father wouldn't put us in a situation for our bad. Romans 8:28 doesn't say that most things work together, more or less, for our good - sometimes. The verse says all things work together for our good.
Regardless of the nature of your job, you have the choice to approach it with gratitude or with entitlement. You can groan about your plight or you can do something about it. You see, cultivating joy in our work begins with recognizing that God didn't give us work to punish us - rather, He gave us work as a gift. A gift for which we should be grateful. And this grateful disposition is more than just positive thinking; it changes us from the inside out into more God-trusting and confident people.
Maybe we should even be thankful for thankfulness.