“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.
All these curses shall come upon you and shall pursue you and overtake you till you are destroyed, because you do not obey the voice of the Lord your God, to keep His commandments and His statutes which He commanded you. 46 They shall be upon you for a sign [of warning to other nations] and for a wonder, and upon your descendants forever. 47 Because you did not serve the Lord your God with joyfulness of [mind and] heart [in gratitude] for the abundance of all [with which He had blessed you], 48 Therefore you shall serve your enemies whom the Lord shall send against you, in hunger and thirst, in nakedness and in want of all things; and He will put a yoke of iron upon your neck until He has destroyed you. Deuteronomy 28:45-48 AMP
Deuteronomy 28 is a record of the blessings of obedience, and of honoring and serving God, and the curses that come from refusing to honor and obey God. God would love for you to walk in abundant blessings and in a surplus of prosperity. He is not the one withholding blessings from you. It is your choice – you position yourself to receive or not. A major key to tapping into the blessings of God and protecting yourself from the attacks of the enemy is in your attitude. If put God first in your life, if you are grateful to God for all His blessings, and if you serve Him with joyfulness of mind and heart, the blessing on your life will increase. However, if you are ungrateful and you complain and do not appreciate the blessings you do have, you will open the door for the devil and bring curses on yourself and your family.
Gratefulness keeps you close to God and keeps you trusting in Him. You see His hand in every area of your life. You appreciate what He has already done for you yesterday, what He is doing for you today, and you look forward with a joyful, confident expectation to what He will do for you again tomorrow. If you slip into an ungrateful way of thinking, you begin to doubt God. You begin to think that He has not done enough for you. Maybe you doubt that He did anything for you at all – maybe it was you who did it for yourself. You start to think, “My power and the might of my hand have gotten me this wealth!” (Deuteronomy 8:17) You even begin to resent Him because you think He has done little or nothing for you. All the blessings you have received begin to grow smaller and smaller in your mind and your troubles and trials begin to grow bigger and bigger.
All this time, the state of your attitude has had nothing to do with what God has actually done or not done, but it has everything to do with your own perception of what He has done or not done. You begin to push away from God when you really need Him the most. Of course, when you leave the presence of God, you step into the devil’s territory. This is why the devil loves to stir up ungratefulness in people. It brings them into a place where he can control, manipulate, and have dominion over them.
But if one loves God truly [with affectionate reverence, prompt obedience, and grateful recognition of His blessing], he is known by God [recognized as worthy of His intimacy and love, and he is owned by Him]. 1 Corinthians 8:3 AMP
Your grateful recognition of God’s blessing in your life is an expression of your love for Him. Love is a decision, not a feeling. God already loves you. You must decide to respond to His love and you must love Him back. It is a win-win situation for you and for God! Ungratefulness denotes a lack of love. When husbands begin to be ungrateful toward their wives or when wives begin to be ungrateful toward their husbands, for who they are or what they have done or not done, it erodes the love they felt for each other at the beginning and signals an end to the relationship – unless they get an attitude adjustment. When children do not appreciate their parents, it makes for a rocky relationship. Some kids have been raised by wealthy parents who gave them everything they wanted. Even so, they were greedy and ungrateful – they did not love or appreciate their parents. The more they got the more they wanted and so they even went so far as to murder their parents and siblings to get it all. However, they just ended up losing it all when they were put in jail!
The devil doesn’t care how you end up, as long as it is in a big mess. God does care for you – He wants you to experience abundant life in every area of your existence. He has done so much for you and has so much more planned for you. He wants to be able to do things for you, so wonderful that you haven’t even dreamt them up yet, never mind asked for them. He wants to be able to carry out His purpose and do exceeding abundantly above all that we dare ask or think – infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, hopes, or dreams! (Ephesians 3:20)
Open up your heart and your life for the blessings of God by remembering to joyfully and gratefully thank Him every day for everything He has done, everything He is doing, and everything He is about to do for you!