Gratitude

by Paula Harrington
A few months before our oldest graduated from high school, we went through our address book, and, as tradition, sent announcements to friends and family, near and far. After the cards filled with gifts and well-wishes started to arrive, we bought thank-you notes and encouraged him to promptly mail them.
The notes were simple but had the words, “Thank You for my Graduation Gift” in elaborate cursive across the front. I remember the day he walked into our room asking for a family member’s address. I directed him to the address book on the desk and off he went with it in tow.
A few weeks later, a close friend remarked that she had gotten her thank-you card. However, she did so with a slight smile then added, “I have a funny story for you.” It was then I found out that our son had decided to save time by going through the entire address book and sending everyone a thank-you note, not taking into account whether they had actually sent him a gift or not.
Sadly, gratitude isn’t very common. Too many times, we let our daily details interfere with thanking those who have made an impression upon our lives, making us no different than the nine lepers in Luke 17. While the 10 were healed, only one took the time to return to thank Jesus. He restored their health, yet they were too careless to show their gratitude.
Take a few minutes today to write a thank-you note to that preacher, teacher or friend who made a difference in your life and then thank Jesus for all that he has done for you.
And remember, we must never allow ourselves to become so occupied with this life that we cease to be a people of thanksgiving.
“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, and give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 ESV).

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