With Gratitude in Our Hearts


Text: I Thessalonians 5:12-24

Suggested song: Count Your Blessings

 

I.         The Ten Lepers - Luke 17:11-19

            A.        I’m sure all ten were happy to have been healed.

            B.        Perhaps in their joy nine rushed off to tell their loved ones, but only one returned to say “thank you.”

            C.        We get so caught up in our personal miseries that when they are suddenly gone, we forget to simply say “thank you.”

II.        God wants our appreciation

            A.        Continually offer a sacrifice of praise - Hebrews 13:15

            B.        Psalm 50:14 - Offer God thanksgiving

            C.        Come to Him with thanksgiving - Psalm 95:2; 100:4

            D.        “The World is Mine!” - Dot Aaron

Today, upon a bus, I saw a lovely girl with golden hair.

I envied her, she seemed so gay; I wished I were as fair.

When suddenly she rose to leave,

I saw her hobble down the aisle.

She had one leg, and wore a crutch,

And as she passed – a smile.

O God, forgive me when I whine.

I have two legs, the world is mine!


And then I stopped to buy some sweets.

The lad who sold them had such charm

I talked with him – he seemed so glad –

If I were late ‘twould do no harm.

And as I left he said to me:

“I thank you. You’ve been so kind.

It’s nice to talk with folks like you.

You see,” he said, “I’m blind.”

O God, forgive me when I whine.

I have two eyes, the world is mine!


Later, walking down the street,

I saw a child with eyes of blue.

He stood and watched the others play

It seemed he knew not what to do.

I stopped a moment, then I said,

“Why don’t you join the others, dear?”

He looked ahead without a word,

And then I knew – he could not hear.

O God, forgive me when I whine.

I have two ears, the world is mine!


With legs to take me where I would go –

With eyes to see the sunset’s glow –

With ears to hear what I would know –

O God, forgive me when I whine.

I’m blest indeed, the world is mine!

 

III.       God deserves our thanks

            A.        Every good gift comes from God - James 1:17

            B.        All things come from God - Ephesians 5:20

            C.        Psalm 68:19 - God loads us down with blessings

            D.        Even for His discipline we should be thankful - Psalm 118:18-19

            E.        “My Thanks Come Easily at Times” by Bernard J. Patrick

My thanks come easily

When my fortunes rise

And my will is king

And all the world seems my estate.

My thanks come easily at such times.


But, wait ...

Today, let me reflect

Upon those thanks I owe

But which I find

Express themselves less fluently.


Today, let me remember to give thanks,

Not only for the sunlight,

But for those darker hours

That teach me fortitude.

Let me profess today, a grateful heart,

Not merely for successes I may know,

But as truly for those failures

That teach humility.

 

IV.      How we show our thanks

            A.        Prayer - I Thessalonians 5:16-18; I Timothy 2:1; Philippians 4:6

                        1.         We should not be like ungrateful children who ask for favors, but never stop to thank our benefactor for His kindness

            B.        Song - Psalm 30:1-4

            C.        The Lord’s Supper - I Corinthians 11:23-24

            D.        In whatever you do - Colossians 3:17

                        1.         In obedience serving - Psalm 116:12-15

V.        Why?

            A.        Thankfulness is remembering God - Psalm 103:1-5

                        1.         The Israelites forgot God - Jeremiah 2:32; 3:21; 13:25

                        2.         Illustrated by Hezekiah who was healed of a terminal illness - II Chronicles 32:24-26

                                    a.         Pride was his downfall

                        3.         The same thing happened to the Gentiles - Romans 1:21

                        4.         Remember God all our life, starting from youth - Ecclesiastes 12:1

            B.        Thankfulness honors God - Psalm 50:22-23

            C.        Be thankful – it will spread to others - Psalm 34:1-3