“Can I get another one?”
“Of course, eat as much as you like!” My father cheerfully replied.
My friend scampered to the counter and ordered a double cheeseburger and a large French fries. My baseball team was being treated to a fast food lunch after our Saturday game. After each game, the parents of each player rotated responsibilities and provided refreshments and snacks for the rest of the team. When it was my family’s turn, my father wanted to do something special and announced that we would be going to a local favorite fast food restaurant.
There were fourteen players, ranging in age from ten to twelve years, and my father made sure that all the parents were also invited, serving over forty people. Prior to lunch, he arranged with the manager of the restaurant to keep a running tab of everything our team ate. Two hours later, this amazing feast was over and I staggered out of the restaurant to our car. On the way home, my father was unusually distant. “You okay, Dad?” He simply grunted. Arriving at home, he unloaded on me. “You know, except for your friend, Jake, no one even thanked me for the lunch, not even the coaches or the parents!”
I didn’t know what to say. I was so embarrassed for my father and ashamed of my teammates. I knew everyone was elated to have this special treat, yet in their excitement, they neglected to give thanks.
While traveling to Jerusalem, he passed between Samaria and Galilee. As he entered a village, ten men with leprosy met him. They stood at a distance and raised their voices, saying, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!” When he saw them, he told them, “Go and show yourselves to the priests.” And while they were going, they were cleansed. But one of them, seeing that he was healed, returned and, with a loud voice, gave glory to God. He fell facedown at his feet, thanking him. And he was a Samaritan. Then Jesus said, “Were not ten cleansed? Where are the nine? Didn’t any return to give glory to God except this foreigner?” And he told him, “Get up and go on your way. Your faith has saved you.”
Luke 17:11-19 (CSB)
This incident when Jesus healed the ten lepers is reminiscent of what happened that afternoon many years ago. Lepers were socially and ceremoniously outcast from society. By healing them, Jesus restored their status. Were they happy? I have no doubt they were ecstatic, yet only one returned to thank Him after he was healed. To add to this slight, this man was a Samaritan, a foreigner.
God desires to bless us and all He asks in return is gratitude. Every moment of our life, every breath we take, is only by God’s grace and mercy in our lives. How often do we take these gifts for granted? When God blesses us, we may revel with others for our gifts, but do we always remember to thank the Giver?
Rejoice always, pray constantly, give thanks in everything; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-19 (CSB)
Love and trust the Lord; seek His will in your life.