11th August 2016

The Attitude We Like Most is Gratitude!

“Give thanks to the Lord and proclaim his greatness. Let the whole world know what he has done.”
Psalm 105:1 (NLT)

I’m sure you’ll agree that “Thank you” always makes a difference! Even though, in most cases it isn’t necessary it still falls easily on the ear of those who have served in some way. We all like to be appreciated and offered this international recognition of service or giving—a simple word of thankfulness.

Recently, I’ve come to realise that one of the most instructive passages of scripture on the subject of thankfulness is found in Luke 17:11-19. Here were ten lepers, men in the most pitiful of all human misery. Not only were they afflicted with a terrible and loathsome disease; but they were outcasts from society and even their families, because of this disease. (Leviticus 13:45-46). These ten lepers had no one to relieve either their physical or emotional suffering; but then after crying out to Jesus for mercy, Jesus sends them to see the priests. As they went to carry out this instruction they were all healed and could be restored to their families and friends again. But only one of them, realising what had happened, turned back to give thanks. He fell at Jesus’ feet, thanking him for what he had done, and he was a Samaritan! Did Jesus appreciate the fact that this individual took the time to return and say “Thank you”—I think he did! Notice verses 17 and 18 here, Jesus asks him, “Didn’t I heal ten men? Where are the other nine? Does only this foreigner return to give glory to God?”

The primary purpose of giving thanks to God is to acknowledge his goodness and honour him. Psalm 50:23 (NIV), says; “He who sacrifices thank offerings honours me.” Thanksgiving promotes not only the glory of God, but also humility in us because whenever we take the time to express thankfulness we are in fact acknowledging that this blessing or gift did not originate from us but comes freely from some outside source; and that we can’t take the credit!

The Apostle Paul, as usual hits the nail squarely on the head when he writes, “So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.” (Colossians 2:6-7 NIV). Or as one anonymous writer puts it, “Thankfulness could well be the finest sentiment of man—and the rarest.”

Prayer
Thanks be to you, great God, for every blessing and every precious gift that you bestow upon us in your gracious mercy and your overwhelming love. Fill us each day with humble appreciation to you and others.
Amen

Study by Cliff Neill

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cliffneillAbout the Author:
Cliff Neill is an Elder in Grace Communion Church Luton.

Local Congregation:
Grace Communion Church Luton
Farley Hill Methodist Church
North Drift Way
Farley Hill
LUTON LU1 5JE

Meeting Time:
Saturday 10:30am

Local Congregational Contact:
Harry Sullivan
Phone: 01908-582222
Email: harry_sullivan@wcg.org.uk

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