Expressing Gratitude is One Place, as People, We Consistently Fail

The Words, Thank You, Really Aren’t That Hard to Say

Why is it that as a society we have become so ungrateful? Somewhere along the way we’ve developed a sense of entitlement.

I think a lot of this currently goes back to the 20s and 30s and the hard times of the depression. People that lived then knew struggles and were grateful for what little they had.

After going through those difficulties many parents didn’t want their children to have it so hard and did what they could to make it easier for their kids. Each following generation has seemed to take this sense of entitlement to a new level.

A lack of gratitude is a human condition that didn’t start with the depression. It was around from the beginning. In Luke 17:11-19 Jesus healed 10 lepers of their disease and only 1 came back to say thank You. This is unacceptable.

No matter how bad our situation is, we can always find something to be grateful for. It’s up to us to find it.

When we find it…we need to share that gratefulness by saying thank you.

In 1850 the Lady Elgin sank off the shore of Lake Michigan. Following the crash, Edward Spencer, a young ministerial student at Garrett Bible College, plunged himself time and again into the frigid waters to pull seventeen desperate passengers from certain death.

But those lives weren’t saved without cost.  Edward’s repeated plunges into the icy lake permanently damaged the young man’s health.  Some years later, at Edward’s funeral, it was noted that not one of those seventeen people snatched from death that day ever bothered to thank him.

Gratefulness is a choice.

Consider Anne Frank and her situation when she and her family were hiding from the Nazis. Even in her circumstances, she chose to be grateful. She did this by comparing her situation with others that were less fortunate.  

“Like a breeze cleans smoke from the air, a grateful heart removes the clouds of despair. It’s impossible for the seeds of depression to take root in a thankful heart. God has bestowed many gifts upon me and for those I will be grateful.

I am grateful for sight, sound and breath. If ever there is a pouring out of blessings beyond that, then I will be grateful for the miracle of abundance.”

(The 5th Decision, The Travelers Gift, Andy Andrews)

What are you grateful for today?

There are a lot of different ways to show gratitude.

One of those ways is by doing what we do well. When we do this, it is saying thank you to the persons we are doing it for.

Professional golfer Arnold Palmer was known for his signature and the millions of times he gave autographs to people. He was adamant about it being legible.

“What’s the point of signing something if the person can’t read it or later can’t even remember who it was,” he reasoned. He would be frustrated when other golfers would just scribble something and call it an autograph. Palmer was grateful for people willing to wait for his autograph and he would thank them by signing legibly until everyone was taken care of.

It is much more enjoyable to be around happy grateful people than someone who is grumpy and complaining.

We need to bubble over with joy and gratitude for all the blessings God has given us.

Consider who you need to thank today…both God and/or individuals and then thank them.

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