Summary: This text in Romans chapter one reveals the sin of ingratitude and just how bad it is in God’s mind.
INTRO.- ILL.- A Sunday School teacher asked her class what they were thankful for. One little boy said, “My glasses.” When asked why he was thankful for his glasses, he said, “Because they keep the boys from fighting me and the girls from kissing me.”
This is the season of thanksgiving and we need to be thankful to God for EVERYTHING He has given to us and EVERYTHING He has done for us. Large or small blessings, significant and seemingly insignificant, we need to be thankful.
ILL.- Many years ago (probably 25 to 30) I had my eyes examined by an optician at Horner Rausch Optical in the mall at Carbondale, IL. I complained somewhat to the optician about my poor eyesight. He said, “Oh, your eyes are not bad at all. We have many foreign students come for an exam and most of them have far worse eyesight than you. THEY ARE EXTREMELY NEARSIGHTED, TO THE POINT WHERE IT IS ALMOST UNCORRECTABLE.” I shut up after that.
Brothers and sisters, do we even have a speck of an idea of how blessed we are to have been born and raised in America? And decent eyesight is just one of those many blessings.
ILL.- Some months ago I had a stress/echo heart test done. I was having some breathlessness while mowing in the heat and my doctor thought I should have the test. I did it and passed with flying colors. My heart doctor was Dr. Tagupa, who is originally from the Philippines.
While visiting with him after the test I told him that I had been sending some money to a preacher in the Philippines. And immediately, red flags went up with Dr. Tagupa and he asked me how well I knew this preacher.
He said that the people in the Philippines are so poor that any mail from the United States is generally stolen because those people believe all Americans are rich.
Well, I assured him that I checked out my preacher friend, Packs Padilla. I discovered that he went to our Bible college over there and Brother Roger Celis knows him and confirmed that he is on the “up and up.” So I felt good about sending him money.
Dr. Tagupa proceeded to tell me that if a person was receiving only $700 a month in social security payments they could go to the Philippines and live in a nice house with air conditioning, eat very well and even have a maid. In other words, live like a king. I told Elaine about it and said, “Let’s go!”
Brothers and sisters, even though our money doesn’t seem to go very far here in America we are still rich and very blessed! GOD NEEDS TO WAKE US UP AND SHAKE US UP ABOUT THIS AND MANY OTHER THINGS.
ILL.- It was on Thanksgiving many years ago that actress Helen Hayes cooked her first turkey. Before serving it she announced to her husband, Charles MacArthur, and their son James: “Now I know this is the first turkey I’ve ever cooked. If it isn’t right, I don’t want anybody to say a word. We’ll just get up from the table without comment, and go out to eat for dinner.”
Then she retired to the kitchen. When she entered the dining room, bearing the turkey, she found her husband and son seated at the table—wearing their hats and coats.