Speaking of being thankful

November 26, 2010 — Leave a comment

Remember God’s bounty in the year. String the pearls of His favor. Hide the dark parts, except so far as they are breaking out in light! Give this one day to thanks, to joy, to gratitude!

Henry Ward Beecher

***

Why is it so difficult to acknowledge a gift as gift? Here is the reason. When I admit that something is a gift, I admit my dependence on the giver. This may not sound that difficult, but there is something within us that bristles at the idea of dependence. We want to get along by ourselves. Yet a gift is something we simply cannot give to ourselves—not as a gift, at any rate. I can buy the same thing or even something better. But it will not be a gift if I procure it for myself.

When I acknowledge a gift received, I acknowledge a bond that binds me to the giver. But we tend to fear the obligations this bond entails. Thirty years ago, it was current usage in America to express one’s thanks by saying “very much obliged.” Hardly anyone uses that expression today. Why not? We simply do not want to be obliged. We want to be self-sufficient. Our language gives us away.

One single gift acknowledged in gratefulness has power to dissolve the ties of our alienation, and we are home free…One who says “Thank you” to another really says, “We belong together.”

David Steindl-Rast

***

If I have enjoyed the hospitality of the Host of this universe, Who daily spreads a table in my sight, surely I cannot do less than acknowledge my dependence.

G. A. Johnston Ross

This Week’s Special

Oh, thank God—-He’s so good! His love never runs out.
All of you set free by God, tell the world!
Tell how He freed you from oppression,
Then rounded you up from all over the place,
from the four winds, from the seven seas.

Some of you wandered for years in the desert,
looking but not finding a good place to live,
Half-starved and parched with thirst,
staggering and stumbling, on the brink of exhaustion.
Then, in your desperate condition, you called out to God.
He got you out in the nick of time;
He put your feet on a wonderful road
that took you straight to a good place to live.
So thank God for His marvelous love,
for His miracle mercy to the children He loves.
He poured great draughts of water down parched throats;
the starved and hungry got plenty to eat.

Psalm 107:1-9, The Message

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