When you were young, it’s likely one of the first words your parents taught you was “thank you.” That’s because there’s power in gratitude—power to brighten days and change lives.

A man explains how gratitude has blessed and changed his life
A man explains how gratitude has blessed and changed his life

Principles of Peace: Gratitude

What is gratitude?

Gratitude is simple: it’s recognizing the good things you’ve been given and giving thanks in return. It can take many forms. Sometimes it’s as simple as a silent acknowledgment to yourself of how lucky you are. Sometimes it’s a kind word, a thank you card, or a prayer to God.

Praise ye the Lord. O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.

—Psalm 106:1

Why should I be grateful?

What if you don’t feel like you have a lot to be grateful for? No matter who you are, expressing gratitude really helps put life in perspective. Take time today to list all the blessings in your life. Some possibilities might include health, loving relationships, or knowledge of God. Whatever your circumstances, focusing on the good in life can help you become a happier person. Not only that, but showing gratitude can also help you develop a relationship with God when you realize how much He has given you.

“Those who set aside the bottle of bitterness and lift instead the goblet of gratitude can find a purifying drink of healing, peace, and understanding.”

—Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, “Grateful in Any Circumstances,” Ensign or Liahona, May 2014, 70.

What should I be grateful for?

We should be grateful to parents, family, friends, teachers, and everyone who has helped us in any way. Think of all the little ways others have contributed to your well-being: maybe someone helped you when you were in a tight spot, or maybe someone just offered a kind word when you needed it the most.

Above all, we should be grateful to God. He created us and gives us breath every day. He gave His Son so that we could be forgiven of our mistakes and be clean. We can show our gratitude by trying to be the best people we can. We may still fall short sometimes, but that’s where Jesus’s sacrifice comes in—we can always try again. Isn’t that something to be grateful for?

Draw Closer to God