Indelible Grace Church

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Reflection on Gratitude

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Gratitude is one of the central characteristics of the Christian life. The Bible is replete with commands to give thanks: Colossians 3:15, “and be thankful,” 1 Thessalonians 5:18, “give thanks in all circumstances,” Ephesians 5:20, “give thanks always and for everything to God.”

And there is Jesus’ encounter with the ten lepers in Luke 17:11-19. In the story, ten lepers cry out from a distance to Jesus, “master, have mercy on us.” Jesus tells them, “go show yourself to the priests,” and on the way, all of them are cleansed and healed. But only one returns to Jesus, falls at his feet, and gives thanks. Jesus replies, “were not ten cleansed? Where are the nine?”

We can all sympathize with the nine. They were eager to get on with the business of returning to their lives. They had homes and families waiting for them. They had missed so much of life, they didn’t want to miss another minute. But they forgot to give thanks to the source of all their good things. And most tragically, they missed the Savior Jesus.

We are very much like those nine lepers. So busy and occupied, we don’t pause to reflect in wonder and awe at God’s bountiful goodness. Every breath, every ray of sunshine, every stray moment of happiness is a gift. Let us pause and give thanks to God, most of all for the gift of Jesus.