October 4, 2010

a spirit of thanksgiving

I am not particularly good at being thankful. I'm not sure why this is the case, must be a character flaw or something. But I'm usually looking down the road at what is coming next rather than living in the present and being thankful for what I have.

For example, I get paid on the fifteenth and last day of the month via direct deposit. So on the sixteenth and first, once the bank has cleared my stipend, I set out to pay bills. By the evening of the sixteenth and the first of each month I'm usually already pushing my budget for the pay-period and stressed about that extra tank of gas or homeowner's association dues bill or as the case is now, Christmas.

I never take the time to be thankful for the generous pay that I am given so that I can do the great work to which I have been called. Sure, every once in a while I'll realize how blessed we are that SHW has been able to stay at home with FBC these 18 months, but generally speaking I choose future stress over present thanksgiving.

And I'm guessing many of you, dear readers, do too. It is why heart disease is so prevalent in our society. It is why my TV and radio are filled with ads for debt relief, bankruptcy, mortgage help, and pay-day loans. It is an unhealthy and dangerous way to live and it is not what God has in mind for us.

10 lepers are healed but only 1 returns to express his thankfulness to the one who healed him. No wonder the history of God and his people is so filled with God's wrath, a 10% thanksgiving rate is pretty terrible. Jesus commends with his right hand the Samaritan leper while at the same time condemning with his left the nine who went away without a word of thanksgiving on their lips.

I'm going to work harder on the whole thankfulness thing. It is important for my well being, sure, but more importantly, it is the way God created me to be. And for that, I'm thankful.

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