7 Marks of a Disciple: Gratitude

"Zakæus" by Gunnar Bach Pedersen

Read Luke 17:11-19

George Washington set aside one day “as a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favours of Almighty God.”

What would the devil do to Thanksgiving?

  • Instead of a lingering family get together, he’d have everyone rushing out the door to get in line at Wal-Mart
  • Instead of cousins playing together, he’d have them absorbing flyers and updating Amazon Wish Lists
  • Instead of a day off for almost everyone, he’d have single moms making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for their kids before they have to go to work all day so we can save twenty dollars on a television we don’t need.

You cannot give thanks for what you have when you are shopping for what you do not have.

Jesus told the ten, “Go and show yourselves.” Healed. Yes. Grateful? No.

Where are the nine?

We all have much to be thankful for

  • where you were born
  • when you were born
  • your family (if you think yours is crazy, you’re right, some just do a better job of hiding it)
  • your friends (if you have one good friend you are spoiled)
  • whoever taught you the faith
  • those who are older than you (not too arrogant to acknowledge their mistakes and can share some lessons)
  • those who are younger than you (untarnished optimism & unending energy)

My favorite people in the world are the most grateful; my least favorite are the most entitled.

Gratitude is the chief virtue, as all other virtues flow out from it. It is the flour in the virtue pantry that is used in every recipe.

Compassion: wanted to give you an opportunity to help someone for whom it is hard to be thankful because they have so little to be thankful for. Wanted to give you an opportunity to have someone in the world who is praying for you before you wake and after you sleep.

How to be thankful and teach children gratitude — friendship average

This thanksgiving, instead of just pigging out, turning on the game, and falling into a turkey coma, let’s make a difference for God’s kingdom, so no matter what those around us are doing, when this year ends, when our lives end, when this world ends, let us be found giving thanks to God.