Simple to say but yet often taken for granted, the phrase “thank you” is one of the most powerful phrase we can say. Every human wants to be appreciated. Inasmuch as we try to say we don’t do things for us to be acknowledged, the truth is that we do want to be appreciated. It is not a sin to expect gratitude when we help people. It is human nature. God expects us to show Him gratitude and He also put this same desire in us.
One of the reasons why we don’t show appreciation is over-familiarity. We become too accustomed to receiving to the point where we develop an entitlement mentality. Perhaps the ‘all things are yours’ sermons haven’t helped either. I agree all things are ours through Christ. However when that is all we hear, we take blessings for granted and snatch it off God because they are ours anyway.
As a parent, my kids know that everything in my house are theirs. Despite this, they still come to ask before they take anything even as little as fruits. Once given the go ahead, they show appreciation by saying ‘thank you’. It makes me know that they are grateful for what they are given. Imagine if they never asked and they helped themselves to anything they wanted without acknowledging the one who provided it. I will feel undervalued and unappreciated.
This is the same way God feels when we don’t show appreciation. Some believers have become spoilt children who never acknowledge their giver.
As a child, there were some ladies my mum used to give clothes to. Whenever these ladies got presents from my mum, one of them in particular would go the extra mile with her gratitude. She would express how and why she really liked the clothes and she would wear the item the following Sunday. She did this with joy and because of how she showed her gratitude, she always got more. Gratitude makes us get more from God!
Over-familiarity was displayed by 9 lepers who were healed by Jesus Christ in Luke 17:11-19. Because leprosy was contagious, people who had this disease were required to try to stay away from other people and to announce their presence if they had to come near. The interesting thing about this story is that these lepers had great faith that brought about their healing. However only one of them came back to say “thank you” to the One who healed them.
It is possible for faith to dwell in an ungrateful heart. The fact that provision is being made and prayers are being answered is not a proof to how tender, humble and grateful our hearts are.
Gratitude unraveled the misery behind the miracle to the one leper. He had a revelation of why he was healed. Jesus told him that his faith was the catalyst that brought about his healing. The other 9 missed out on this revelation.
There are some spiritual miseries that can only be unraveled in the place of thanksgiving. A grateful heart is a joyful heart.
God does not demand that we thank Him, but He is pleased when we do so. And He uses our responsiveness to teach us more about Himself. The ungrateful lepers were healed but the grateful one was healed and made whole. He didn’t only get a physical healing, everything about him was perfected.
Some marriages will be better if “thank you” was said often.
Some relationships will be healed if the act of saying “thank you” was mastered.
More uncommon doors will be opened if “thank you” is said for the ones already opened.
Ingratitude comes from a place of pride. Humans are naturally prideful. We need to humble ourselves to understand that we do not deserve what we have; for everything we have has been given to us because of God’s mercy.
As you read this, i want you to take a moment and acknowledge God for what He has done for you. If you think He has done nothing, thank Him for life, that you can see, hear, speak, is enough to be grateful for.
That this a step further and say thank you to your spouse for doing the dishes, for getting groceries, for doing the laundry and ironing, for putting up with you.
Think of someone who you have been taking for granted and send a thank you note to that person. Put what you have read into practice. As you do, you will enjoy more of God’s blessings.