Thou Shalt Not Covet: A Grateful Attitude Can Bring You Closer to God

If you are hoping to strengthen your relationship with God, you might begin by looking at the Ten Commandments from the Bible and see how you can apply those commandments to your current lifestyle. Some of the commandments, like choosing not to lie or bringing honor to your parents, are simple. One that people often overlook, however, is the commandment not to covet.

To covet means to wish for things that other people have that you do not have. When you're always feeling negative because other people have things you want, resentment clouds your ability to feel more positive spiritual feelings. Here are some ways to help you develop a more grateful attitude to bring you closer to God. 

1. Write down things that are going well in your life.

This task might be hard for you at first. You might start simple. For example, you might begin by writing that you are grateful to have enough food to eat, to have electricity, or to have a loving family. As you get used to looking for the good things you already have in your life, writing down these things down on a daily basis becomes a lot easier. You'll also notice a shift in your attitude as you go through your day. You'll notice more good things and start to see that you have plenty to be grateful for.

2. Say prayers of gratitude.

Prayers often focus on things people want or need. You might have gotten into the habit of asking for blessings without giving thanks. Try an experiment where you say prayers that just thank God for blessings you notice throughout your day. Try not to ask for anything; instead, focus all the energy of your prayer into feelings of gratitude.

3. Look for ways you can help others who need help

You can distract yourself from coveting the possessions and lifestyles of others by serving people who need help. You might volunteer at a local food bank, look for people in your neighborhood who might need a hand, such as a driveway shoveled or a lawn mowed. Try visiting someone who is lonely, babysitting a child for a single parent, or donating funds to charity. 

4. Read books about applying the Ten Commandments to your life. 

If you would like to develop a closer relationship with God, books can be really helpful. They can help you learn more about what it means to keep the Ten Commandments. Along with your study of scripture like the Bible, books written about getting closer to God can help give you more perspective about what discipleship looks like on a day-to-day basis.