Summary: Overcoming The Perils of Prosperity with a Thankful Spirit
The Value Of A Thankful Spirit
Overcoming The Perils of Prosperity With A Thankful Spirit
Text: Deut. 8:1-20
Be careful to follow every command I am giving you today, so that you may live and increase and may enter and possess the land that the Lord promised on oath to your forefathers.  Remember how the Lord your God led you all the way in the desert these forty years, to humble you and to test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands.  He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your fathers had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord.  Your clothes did not wear out and your feet did not swell during these forty years.  Know then in your heart that as a man disciplines his son, so the Lord your God disciplines you.
 Observe the commands of the Lord your God, walking in his ways and revering him.  For the Lord your God is bringing you into a good land--a land with streams and pools of water, with springs flowing in the valleys and hills;  a land with wheat and barley, vines and fig trees, pomegranates, olive oil and honey;  a land where bread will not be scarce and you will lack nothing; a land where the rocks are iron and you can dig copper out of the hills.
 When you have eaten and are satisfied, praise the Lord your God for the good land he has given you.  Be careful that you do not forget the Lord your God, failing to observe his commands, his laws and his decrees that I am giving you this day.  Otherwise, when you eat and are satisfied, when you build fine houses and settle down,  and when your herds and flocks grow large and your silver and gold increase and all you have is multiplied,  then your heart will become proud and you will forget the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.  He led you through the vast and dreadful desert, that thirsty and waterless land, with its venomous snakes and scorpions. He brought you water out of hard rock.  He gave you manna to eat in the desert, something your fathers had never known, to humble and to test you so that in the end it might go well with you.  You may say to yourself, "My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me."  But remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your forefathers, as it is today.
 If you ever forget the Lord your God and follow other gods and worship and bow down to them, I testify against you today that you will surely be destroyed.  Like the nations the Lord destroyed before you, so you will be destroyed for not obeying the Lord your God.
A man writing at a post-office desk was approached by an elderly fellow who asked, "Sir, could I get you to address this postcard for me?"
The man did so gladly, and then agreed to another request, which was to write a message on the card, and to sign it. He then asked, "Is there anything else I can do for you?"
The old fellow thought a moment, then said, "Yes. Add this at the end: ’P.S. Please excuse the handwriting.’"
John Henry Jowett, a British preacher of an earlier generation, said this about gratitude: “Gratitude is a vaccine, an antitoxin, and an antiseptic.” What did he mean? He meant that gratitude, like a vaccine, can prevent the invasion of a disgruntled, discouraged spirit. Like an antitoxin, gratitude can prevent the affects of the poisons of cynicism, criticalness, and grumbling. Like an antiseptic, a spirit of gratitude can soothe and heal the most troubled spirit.
In this season of Thanksgiving may we know what it is to have a thankful spirit...
It was very clear in Deut. here that Moses was giving the people a warning not to forget what God has done for them, and in so doing will receive great blessings as a result...
Moses was clearly letting the people know that there was going to be a time in the not too distant future that they would be tempted to believe they were the reason for their own prosperity, and that God would be pushed to the background.