A current trend being popularized by YouTube vloggers is creating videos about thing they are grateful for over a period of time. This may be a reaction to many studies suggesting our physical health improves when we openly express gratitude. Naming what we are grateful for reminds us things are not as bad as our circumstances might suggest and often there is more to be thankful for than we realize.
The story of the lepers in Luke 17:11-19, draws my mind to the topic of thankfulness. Leprosy was known to be a dreadful and contagious disease. Lepers were not allowed to interact with the general population, they were shunned and isolated. They had to make their condition known to anyone approaching by shouting ‘unclean’ ‘unclean’. Their condition was grave but then along comes Jesus and offers them healing through their faith.
It would seem that for anyone that had received such an obvious miracle, they would be ecstatic with thankfulness. But what happened instead? Nine continued on their journey and only one turned and offered thanks to Jesus. I wonder what happened to the others. Did they assume that Jesus knew they were thankful? Did they forget their manners? Where they caught up in the excitement of such a great moment they didn’t remember to be thankful?
Just like the lepers we can get so caught up in the events around us and neglect to thank those near and dear to us. In the busyness of life we sometimes assume that they already know we are grateful to them for all they do. While they probably do know this, I’m sure going out of our way to acknowledge and say thank you to them will most definitely make their day.
In this season of thankfulness, as we extend kindness and thanks to those celebrating with us from far and wide, let us take a moment to do the same for those who walk alongside us every day. If there is someone in your life who is there for you on a regular basis but you have not said ‘thank you’ to them in a while or maybe you have never even done so. This season is a great excuse to do so.
The words of 1 Thessalonians 1:2, NKJV which says, “We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers,” are words we should chose to say frequently for those near and dear to us. We offer our thanks to them with thoughts and gifts and we also lift them up in prayer.