This week we have some Give Thanks! devotions and then we will start Advent with our scratch-off Advent 2016 Calendar.
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Give Thanks! - The Thankful Leper
Wednesday, November 23
Jesus Cleanses Ten Lepers
On the way to Jerusalem Jesus was going through the region between Samaria and Galilee. As he entered a village, ten lepers approached him. Keeping their distance, they called out, 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 went, they were made clean. Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising God with a loud voice. He prostrated himself at Jesus' feet and thanked him. And he was a Samaritan. Then Jesus asked, "Were not ten made clean? But the other nine, where are they? Was none of them found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?" Then he said to him, "Get up and go on your way; your faith has made you well." - Luke 17:11-19 (NRSV)
"Remember to say thank you!"
"What a nice gift! Now, what do you say?"
If you're a parent (or spend much time around kids), you know how difficult it is to teach children to express simple gratitude when they receive something nice. As we grow older, we learn the rules of politeness and gratitude. We come to understand the importance of expressing thankfulness at the right times. But that doesn't mean we always do it. Jesus cleansing the ten lepers - one of his most famous miracles - illustrates exactly how difficult we find it to say the words "Thank You".
Things to think about:
- Have you ever been frustrated when somebody didn't thank you for something you did for them? Why does a lack of gratitude sting us?
- Why do you think the nine lepers didn't return to thank Jesus after such an incredible gift? Can you sympathize with them?
- Was it really important for the lepers to thank Jesus for what he had done? Is expressing gratitude merely an act of social politeness or is there more significance to it?
- What has God done for you that you have not thanked Him for? What do you need to thank God for today?