The value of gratitude

As time passes by, it seems that people are less used to thank each other. Or maybe they thank, but only because they want to be polite, but these words don’t come from a heart full of gratitude. This thing makes those who deserve gratitude feel unvalued, but it will also bring consequences in the lives of those who do not know to be grateful and to show gratitude for the values or investiment they have received in their lives. How often do you see a pupil who goes to thank his teacher for what he taught him? In fact, there are also few men who show gratitude for what their wives have done and inversely. Gratitude words that come from a gratitude heart give life and they give glory to God. I want to present you a situation from the Bible, when the Lord Jesus showed the value of gratitude, and then, I want all of us learn gratitude from this example. The biblical passage says so:

While He was on the way to Jerusalem, He was passing between Samaria and Galilee. As He entered a village, ten leprous men who stood at a distance met Him; and they raised their voices, saying, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!” When He saw them, He said to them, “Go and show yourselves to the priests.” And as they were going, they were cleansed. Now one of them, when he saw that he had been healed, turned back, glorifying God with a loud voice, and he fell on his face at His feet, giving thanks to Him. And he was a Samaritan. Then Jesus answered and said, “Were there not ten cleansed? But the nine–where are they? Was no one found who returned to give glory to God, except this foreigner?” And He said to him, “Stand up and go; your faith has made you well. (The Gospel of Luke 17:11–19)(NASB)

All people have reasons to be grateful

Leprosy is an infectious very grave disease, that people can not cure. Besides the physical pain, it brings much soul suffering, because lepers had to be separated from the whole society. Today, these people are hospitalized in leper hospital for the rest of their lives. In olden times, when one became leprous, the priest determined that and he declared that man unclean. The Bible says:

As for the leper who has the infection, his clothes shall be torn, and the hair of his head shall be uncovered, and he shall cover his mustache and cry, ‘Unclean! Unclean!’ He shall remain unclean all the days during which he has the infection; he is unclean. He shall live alone; his dwelling shall be outside the camp. (Leveticus 13:45–46)(NASB)

We can realize from this passage how the lives of those ten lepers had been until they came to Jesus and received healing. The Lord Jesus saved them from physical and spiritual suffering they had had, being rejected by the society. Who are the people who contributed to your life? How and what thing do you have to thank them for? Or maybe you haven’t yet done this, as the nine of those ten lepers didn’t thank when they were healed? Do you know why they acted so and why most people remain unthankful to their benefactors?

The desire to receive acknowledgment and appreciation from people is stronger than to show gratitude to your benefactors.

In the above cited example, the Lord Jesus could have healed those ten lepers immediately, as he had done with so many people. But, it seems he wanted to give them a test when he sent them to the priests and then he healed them while they were on their way. Firstly it was a test of their faith. If they didn’t believe Jesus’ words, they wouldn’t have gone to priests. But, it was also a test about the gratitude of their hearts. They were healed while they were walking and the Lord Jesus says that all ten were healed. nevertheless, nine of them, didn’t consider necessary to go and thank Jesus after they had been healed, but they wanted to go quicklier to priests, so that they might be declared clean and people might acknowledge it and receive them back in society. This was a problem of many people of all generations, but it is highly observed in our generation. People are thirsty to receive others’ acknowledgment, but they don’t show gratitude to those who have invested in their lives. How do you act? Do you show gratitude to your parents, to your brothers, to your friends, to your teachers, to those who helped you accomplish what you are, can and have now? Or are you so busy with your career, your studies, or with any other thing you do to get acknowledgment from people, that you don’t even have time and wish to thank and to show gratitude? This is not good, because…

One who is not grateful, can not give glory to God

When Jesus spoke about those ten healed lepers, He said: “Were there not ten cleansed? But the nine–where are they? Was no one found who returned to give glory to God, except this foreigner?” Do you see that gratitude gives glory to God? And inversely, a man who is not grateful and can not say “Thank you”, can not give glory to God.

Dear reader! Don’t let the thinking of this age and of unrighteous people influence you. Don’t be an unthankful person. Think at the persons who have invested in your life and go to them today, or write them a message or call them to express your gratitude and thankfulness. Keep this attitude of gratitude in your heart for the rest of your life.

Translated by Felicia Djugostran