Well, here we are again thinking about turkey, dressing, cranberries, pecan and pumpkin pies, and visiting with family and friends. But are we thinking about how grateful we are? How blessed we are to be able to be thankful. I just read a message by Carl Willis and I thought I would share it with you because it says things better than I can this year. It is entitled “Thanksgiving Turkeys & Other Ungrateful People” and is based on the Gospel of Luke 17:11-19. It deals with thanksgiving being a matter of the heart.
Luke 17:11-19 (NT) tells us that “As Jesus continued on toward Jerusalem, he reached the border between Galilee and Samaria. As he entered a village there, ten lepers stood at a distance, crying out, ‘Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!’ He looked at them and said, ‘Go show yourselves to the priests.’ And as they went, their leprosy disappeared. One of them, when he saw that he was healed, came back to Jesus, shouting. ‘Praise God, I’m healed!’ He fell face down on the ground at Jesus’ feet, thanking him for what he had done. this man was a Samaritan. Jesus asked, ‘Didn’t I heal ten men? Where are the other nine? Does only this foreigner return to give glory to God?’ And Jesus said to the man, ‘Stand up and go. Your faith has made you well.’ ”
Every one of us has needs. Your needs may be physical, financial, emotional, family, and spiritual. We all tend to seek God’s provision for those needs. We pray for healing, strength, provisions and peace. We see God work in our lives through answered prayers. These may include: a restoration of health, a financial lifeboat, an unforeseen provision, a restored relationship, or, a promotion at work. But are you truly thankful for these answered prayers?
There is a deeper truth than just the answered prayer. First of all, it’s important to realize that Jesus has taken a personal interest in you, to the point that he even gave his life for you. Jesus provided a very specific answer to a very specific need. You needed a savior. Fortunately for us, Jesus doesn’t leave us the way He found us. “If the Son has set you free, you are free indeed.”
This year I hope you go to a new level of thanksgiving. We should be thankful for the gift, but we must look beyond the gift to the giver, just as the one leper did when he turned and went back to Jesus. Don’t just give thanks for what has been given but be thankful for the One who gave it.
What have you been given today?
His Peace and Blessings to all of you, as you continue to believe, have hope, and do the work of the Lord.
God bless you, your families, and our church, always!
As Always, In His Grip …Shalom Aleichem (Peace Be Unto You) …
Until the Nets Are Full,
Your Most Obedient and Humble Servant,