O Give Thanks

“O give thanks unto the Lord, for he is good: for his mercy endureth forever.  Let the redeemed of the Lord say so.”
Psalm 107:1–2, KJV

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March is the time of year when the hard ground of winter gives way to the flowers of spring. But this past March, yellow buttercups weren’t the only thing popping up in yards all around our county. You didn’t need to travel far from your door to see yellow “Thank You, Jesus” signs dotting the landscape. Some signs even took root across state lines.

The bright yellow-sunrise sign with black letters was the brainchild of a sixteen-year-old boy in our area who was quick to give God the glory for the outcome of his idea. With the help of a fellow church member, his vision soon became a reality.

What issued as an expression of gratitude from a single heart at Easter has expanded into multitudes of year-round displays of thanksgiving. Nobody wants to take down their signs. And why should they? Shouldn’t gratitude be the attitude of our hearts every day?

Researchers say that optimism boosts our immune systems and that thankful people deal with stress better. Their rewards are improved health and longer lives. Even Oprah agrees it’s good to be thankful. She began encouraging others to keep gratitude journals years ago.

Despite this, grab-it-tude appears to be the attitude that prevails. Our society has adopted an entitlement mentality. We’ve exchanged counting our blessings for making perpetual wish lists. Some people even spend their Thanksgivings camped out in department store parking lots, anticipating Black Friday’s rock-bottom prices. Making a wise investment is good, but pouncing on the season’s hottest item while wrestling a contender to the floor only makes good fodder for the evening news.

Luke 17 gives an account of ten lepers who encountered Jesus and begged for his mercy. Through acts of obedience to his command all of the lepers were healed, but only one of them returned to express his gratitude. When he threw himself at Jesus’s feet and thanked him, Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine?”

There are many ways to display our gratitude. We may choose to post a sign in our yard or we may not. But one thing is true: an attitude of gratitude will always be obvious. Scripture tells us that out of the abundance of our hearts the mouth speaks (Luke 6:45).

Few give God the honor and the glory he is due. Will you be one who returns to say thank you to Jesus? Will I?

“Let the redeemed of the Lord, say so.”

-Starr Ayers

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