Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong. Let all that you do be done with love. I Corinthians 16:13, 14 NKJV

Friday, May 19, 2017

Attitude of Gratitude....series

The "attitude of gratitude" is something that desperately needs to be cultivated in our hearts, our homes, and our society. Its presence brings in its train a host of other blessings, while its absence has profound, lethal repercussions. Consider with me some of the contrasts between a grateful heart and an ungrateful heart:

A grateful person is a humble person, while ingratitude reveals a proud heart.

The grateful person feels a great sense of unworthiness-"I have so much more than I deserve." But an ungrateful person feels, "I deserve so much more than I have."
I can still remember hearing my father respond when asked how he was doing, "Better than I deserve!" He had a grateful heart. You see, he never forgot the waywardness and rebellion that had characterized the first twenty-five years of his life, prior to his conversion. It never ceased to amaze him that God had saved him, and he always felt an enormous sense of unworthiness and gratitude  for even the least of God's favors.  
I have always been impressed by the grateful spirit of Ruth the Moabites. Widowed after less than a decade of marriage, and impoverished stranger in a foreign land, and "condemned" to live with her embittered mother-in-law, Ruth seeks a way to support herself and Naomi. When she is discovered by Boaz, who extends to her the right to glean in his fields, she falls all over herself trying to express gratitude for his gracious gesture:
"Then she fell on her face, and bowed herself to the ground, and said unto him,
Why have I found grace in thine eyes, that thou shouldest take knowledge of me,
 seeing I am a stranger?" Ruth 2:10 KJV
I have the feeling that under similar circumstances, I might have been more likely to think, or even say to others, "It's the least he could do!" But the humility of this young widow is seen in her response of gratitude to the least little kindness shown her by another.
Henry Ward Beecher said it well:
Pride slays thanksgiving, but an humble mind is the soil out of which thanks naturally grows.
 A proud man is seldom a grateful man, for he never thanks he gets as much as he deserves. 
Come back next week for our next installment! :O)

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