Thanksgiving?

Posted: November 28, 2009 in Uncategorized

I love Christmas… I really do. It is one of my favorite times of the year. It always has been. There are so many blessings that come with Christmas, blessings that go way beyond the presents. Family, friends, traditions and memories collectively accumulate in to an annual celebration of blessing until one of two things occurs:
1. Our hearts become overwhelmed by the blessing and we in turn offer grattitude in humble and sometimes uncomfortable ways.
2. We become so accustomed to the blessing that we assume the blessing as if we somehow deserve to be blessed and in turn discard our gratitude.

These two scenarios play out in Luke 17 as Jesus was traveling to Jerusalem. Luke tells the story of ten men with Leprosy meeting Jesus as he entered a village between Samaria and Galilee. He says they stood at a distance and called out in a loud voice for Jesus to have pity on them. Jesus, of course, did take pity on them and then instructed them to go show themselves to the priest. While the men were on their way to see the priest they were cleansed of their sickness. One of the ten, noticing he had been healed made his way back to Christ. The bible tells us that he “He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him.” Jesus was obviously perplexed that out of the ten men only one came back to thank him and asked the one, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine?”

I don’t know, nor will I try to understand, the hearts of the nine men who did not come back to see Jesus. They may have been so overcome with joy that they were quick to run and tell their friends and family about their new and improved lives or maybe they were filled with such emotion, they got caught up in the moment and lost track of where the blessing came from. I do know this, they accepted the blessing and discarded the one who blessed them.

In our world, where anything we want is only as far away as we are willing to go, it is easy to assume the blessing and discard the gratitude. We see it play out every year about this time; Thanksgiving becomes a speed bump on the road to Christmas. People almost treat it as though the four day weekend was conceived to make time in our busy schedules for hanging lights and setting up the tree. As much as I love Christmas and all the joy the season brings I think it is very important that we do not forget the gratitude that goes along with the Thanksgiving holiday.

This Thanksgiving holiday, don’t skip the gratitude and go straight for the blessing. Before the tree goes up, before the lights turn on take time to thank God for what He has done. Go back to God, realizing that He has given you so much and thank Him for the blessings that make your life possible. Even when the rest of the world forgets, you be the one to go back and fall at the feet of Christ Jesus, then you can go on living the blessing he so graciously gives to all of us.

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