8th February 2020

An Attitude of Gratitude

“It is good to give thanks to the Lord, and to sing praises to Your name, O Most High.”
Psalm 92:1 (NKJV)

As children we were taught to say ‘thank you’ when a relative, or somebody, gave us a gift, or helped us in some way. I think it’s important that we teach our children and grandchildren today to show gratitude when they receive nice gifts. It’s important that they learn early in life the value of developing an ‘attitude of gratitude’.

We all rightly associate the biblical word grace with God’s forgiveness, mercy and love, but there’s another aspect of grace that is perhaps sometimes overlooked. Interestingly, in biblical Greek the key word for ‘thank you’ is charis or, in English, grace. The modern Greek word for thank you is eucharisto, which is closely related to charis, or grace, in English. So, there is a direct connection between the word grace and being thankful. Some churches refer to the Communion Service as the Eucharist, meaning giving thanks to God for the sacrifice of Jesus Christ for our sins. Many Christians say ‘grace’ at mealtimes.

According to the late radio evangelist and author, Derek Prince, an unthankful person is out of the grace of God! He said, “We cannot be unthankful and, at the same time, be in the grace of God.” In other words, we cannot enjoy God’s grace without being thankful.

There are three other languages based on Latin that bear this out. In French, ‘grace a Dieu’ means, ‘thanks to God’. In Italian, the word for ‘thank you’ is ‘grazie’—directly related once again to grace. In Spanish it’s ‘gracias’. So these three Romance languages all retain the direct connection between grace and thankfulness.

Paul instructs the church in 1 Thessalonians 5:18 “In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” He says much the same in Ephesians 5:20. Luke tells the account of the 10 lepers in Luke 17:11-19. Sadly only one man came back to thank Jesus for healing him of this dreaded disease.

Let’s be deeply thankful to God for the many blessings he showers upon us—not least the gift of life, the forgiveness of sins, the gift of the Holy Spirit, and the promise of life everlasting!

We offer our deep thanks to you, Almighty God, for the gift of your Son, who died for us that we might live and share in your glorious life for all eternity. And for all the daily, physical blessings that we often take for granted. In Jesus’ name.

Study by John Magowan

About the Author:
John Magowan is a member of the Pastoral Council at Grace Community Church, Lisburn, Northern Ireland.

Local Congregation:
Grace Communion Lisburn
Ballymacbrennan School Hall
129A Saintfield Road
BT27 5PG

Meeting Time:
Sunday 11am

Local Congregational Contact:
Phone: 07764336760
Email: bobbeggs@hotmail.com

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