Our culture is drowning in stress and dissatisfaction. We constantly feel like we don’t have enough, like we’re running out of time, victims of our circumstances and other people. This very mindset erodes our hope and undermines our purpose in life. In this presentation I share 5 declarations rooted in Biblical truth that can turn our perspective around and radically change our lives, restoring a positive sense of vision and purpose. You can watch a shortened version of this presentation here.
Introduction: Often seen as just a fluffy emotional response, gratitude is actually a life-changing antidote to entitlement. Entitlement blocks forward motion. It undermines personal, relational, and spiritual growth. It can keep you from fulfilling you purpose, or even enjoying life. When gratitude replaces entitlement in your thoughts and emotions, you are set on a pathway of growth. Five declarations of gratitude can help you embed this attitude in your life.
Declaration #1 / What I have is enough. The starting point for gratitude is to be thankful for the things we have. This frees us from a grasping, greedy lifestyle and opens us up to generosity.
Declaration #2 / The Time I have is enough. We are caught up in an epidemic of hurry, never feeling like we have enough time. But everyone has the same amount of time. The problem is not how much time we have, but how we choose to spend our time. Gratitude allows us to be thankful for the moment we are in. This frees us from the pressure and stress of performance, and opens us to creativity and relationship.
Declaration #3 / The People around me are enough. We spend more emotional energy trying to manage the people around us than anything else, hoping to turn them into something that is more acceptable to us. At best this is wasted effort; often we hurt others in the process. When we can accept the people in our lives for who they are, we are freed from judgmentalism and manipulation. We are freed to enjoy them, and invest our energy in who God made us to be.
Declaration #4 / I am enough. We are drowning in messages of insufficiency. Not good enough, not beautiful enough, not strong enough, not performing well enough. We desperately try to change this, when the truth is that we are enough to start with. God created us enough and loves us as we are. When we can accept that we are enough, we can step off the performance treadmill. This frees us to grow personally and spiritually, without shame.
Declaration #5 / God is enough. The American mythology of the self-made person leads us astray. We are all a part of something bigger than ourselves. When we can acknowledge that we aren’t God, but that we are God’s beloved creation, we are freed from fear and set free to love.
Conclusion: So many of the struggles of life come from an attitude of entitlement stuck in our hearts. We struggle with relationships, with career paths, with financial choices, and so many other things. Gratitude can change the way we think and feel. When we change how we think and feel, we change how we live. By engaging these 5 declarations we can embed gratitude deeply in our lives. This will lead us to a more purposeful and impactful way of living.
Anyone who wants to grow personally and spiritually, and experience a more purposeful life by leaving entitlement behind and embracing gratitude. College students and other adults will find value in this presentation. This presentation is designed as a non-denominational faith-based presentation, but it can be adopted for corporate and other non-religious events.
This material can be delivered as a keynote presentation, a workshop, or half-day seminar. It can also be presented in a multi-day retreat format with speaking, active learning, small group interaction, and personal reflection. Keynotes can range from 30–60 minutes to fit your needs.
You can watch a shortened version of this presentation here.