Summary: Who do we owe our thanks to?
The story is told of two old friends bumped into one another on the street one day. One of them looked forlorn, almost on the verge of tears. His friend asked, "What has the world done to you, my friend?"
The sad fellow said, "Let me tell you. Three weeks ago, an uncle died and left me 10 thousand dollars."
"That’s a lot of money."
"Two weeks ago, a cousin died, and left me 25 thousand.”
"Sounds like you’ve been blessed...."
"You don’t understand!" he interrupted. "Last week my great-aunt passed away. I inherited almost 75 thousand."
Now he was really confused. "Then, why do you look so glum?"
"This week... nothing!"
That’s the trouble with receiving something on a regular basis. Even though it’s a gift, we eventually come to expect it. This is the “entitlement mindset” that has embedded itself in American society at almost every level. We have been blessed to live in a land of plenty and as a result we become complacent and many times we are completely unwilling to give thanks to anyone for anything.
Story of Agnes McClellan/dinner
That philosophy of life is all too common even in Christian homes.
Too often we take for granted someone’s love, kindness, and devotion while never saying those two little words, thank you, but, oh my goodness, let dinner be late just one time, or the towel not hung up, we whine and complain.
Okay, men, let me ask you a question, How long has it been since you thanked your wife for the many things she does for you each day? How long has it been since you thanked your wife for putting a good meal on the table after a day at work herself?
And wives, how long has it been since you thanked your husband for the things he does each day? How long since you thanked him for taking out the trash without being asked for once?
Expressed gratitude is always up lifting, it may startle your spouse if you would express some appreciation. There is a little story about a man who had awakened to the fact that he had never told his wife how much she meant to him, and decided to do better. When he came home he greeted her with a hug and a kiss. She began to cry. He said, “What’s wrong dear?”. She said, “The minister is coming to dinner and here you come home drunk”.
You know, sometimes we just have to be thankful for what have or what we are. It’s Thanksgiving Day & the aroma of roast turkey fills Charlie Brown’s house. Snoopy, outside, lying on top of his doghouse, smells that aroma, & he is thinking, “It’s Thanksgiving Day. Everybody eats turkey on Thanksgiving Day.” So he lies there, watching the back door, eagerly awaiting his Thanksgiving dinner.
Finally, the door opens & here comes Charlie Brown with a bowl of dog food, & he puts it on the ground. Snoopy gets off his house & stares at the dog food with a forlorn look on his face. And he thinks, “Just because I’m a dog, I have to eat dog food on Thanksgiving Day.”
Then the next square shows him looking at the dog food more intently, & he is thinking, “It could be worse. I could be the turkey.”
We are to be thankful to God every day of our lives. That means we shouldn’t wait until a special day like “Thanksgiving Day” to be grateful for all God has given us. We are told in 1 Thess. 5:18 that being thankful to Him is His will for our lives. Yet, too many times, we a bunch of ungrateful crybabies. Children are ungrateful to parents, people are ungrateful to others, and worst of all, people are ungrateful to God.
Now, granted, you may sometimes wonder, what do I have to be thankful for? Think about those first settlers. After all of their hardship, they easily could have been bitter, ungrateful people. They had made 7X more graves than homes to live in. Yet, in 1621, they set aside a day of thanksgiving. One person wisely stated, “We do not always get what we ask from God, but we always have reason to thank Him.”
We can make that same statement. No matter what, we always have reason to thank Him. But do we? Maybe the reason to thank Him is BECAUSE we DID NOT GET WHAT WE WANTED. IN SPITE OF EVERYTHING, WE CAN STILL REJOICE, “FOR THE LORD IS GOOD; HIS STEADFAST LOVE ENDURES FOREVER, AND HIS FAITHFULNESS TO ALL GENERATIONS.”
GOD IS GOOD (ALL THE TIME) ALL THE TIME (GOD IS GOOD)
2,000 years ago, Jesus walked among us. As He was on this journey, He was met by 10 lepers. We’re not sure of their nationalities but we do know that one was a despised Samaritan. They called out to Jesus, “Master, have pity on us!" Jesus simply said, "Go show yourself to the priests." Miraculously, on their way, they were totally healed. But sadly, only the Samaritan returned: "He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him". Only one of the 10 felt they had reason to return and give thanks.