This is the time of year we hear so much about gratitude. Everywhere we look there are all kinds of sayings about giving thanks.
Thanks to the beauty of Hobby Lobby and other fun stores, there are beautiful signs about giving thanks, feeling blessed, and being grateful everywhere we turn.
I can remember as a little girl, rarely seeing these signs. But what I do remember is that giving thanks is not just a saying, but rather an attitude of the heart. Gratitude is not to be something we do as Christians, but a state of being.
As the saying goes, “there are some many things to be thankful for”. But saying these things and recognizing them for what they really are can be tricky. If you are a naturally cynical person (think Eeyore in Winnie the Pooh), there may always be a bent in your gratitude. If you are a exuberant person (think Tigger in Winnie the Pooh) it can feel fake.
But God sees our true heart. He knows where our sincerity comes from deep down.
I have been slowly reading through the gospels and am always struck with the many miracles of Jesus. Everywhere He went, there was a miracle. Everywhere He went, people flocked to Him because they knew there was something He had that gave them hope.
I find it interesting that on some occasions of healing, Christ told some people to go and tell everyone and to some He told go and tell no one. I wonder if it was because He wanted the focus to be only on glorifying God and not about Him, or maybe He was watching the attitude of the recipients heart. Either way, He had a reason for what He told each individual.
Ironically, in many of these cases, we don’t see a verbal display of gratitude displayed. But when we do, there is often a public display of worship associated with it.
One of my favorite examples of this is seen in Luke 8. Jesus is busy and crowds are pressing on Him as He is heading to heal a church official’s daughter. As He is going on his way, a hurting woman, who has been struggling for YEARS, reaches out and touches His garment and is healed. When the woman comes forward, her expression of gratitude over being healed speaks volumes.
And when the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling and falling down before him declared in the presence of all the people why she had touched him and how she had immediately been healed. And he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace.”
So, what is my heart state when I thank Him? Do I recognize who He is and not just what He has done? Our God is a God of immense grace and generous giving. He loves to give gifts to us. Gifts as many as all the beautiful falling leaves right now. Let us lean in and worship!