How Great is Your Thankfulness

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So let me ask you, “How would you rate your level of  Thankfulness?”  Perhaps a better way for me to ask this question would be, “how do you demonstrate that you are a thankful person?”  The truth is that each of us can know if we are a grateful person by our actions.

A great example of this is found in John 4.  Perhaps you are familiar with the story of the Samaritan woman.  She was a woman with several strikes against her.  First, as a woman she was seen as little more than a possession in her day.  Second, she was a Samaritan; which caused many to view her as a second-class citizen.  Finally, she had a questionable past.  When she spoke with Jesus she mentioned several relationships that most likely left some deep scars in her life as well as a current relationship with a man who was not her husband.  The question that I am left with is this “what did a despised “possession” with a hurtful past and a sinful present have to be thankful for?”  The answer…Jesus.

For just a moment think with me about her encounter with Jesus.  It really is a powerful and moving illustration of God’s love.  In it we discover a God who saw this lady not as a possession but as a person.  A God who loved her even though she was from the other side of the tracks.  A God who knew her past but still desired to be a blessing to her.  We learn about a God who had the power to actually change her life and give her life purpose.  Even now as I remember this story I can’t help but be moved by how Jesus demonstrated God’s unconditional love to a woman who had absolutely nothing to give in return.

Now if we are honest with ourselves, this is exactly the condition that God found us in.  Many of us felt worthless and beaten down by life.  Many of us have things in our past that have hurt us and left scars on our lives.  And yet despite all the strikes against us, God engaged us, transformed us, and has given us a purpose for living.

Before we end this article, we have to take a moment and notice one other thing about this incredible woman.  Let’s quickly look at her response to the love that Jesus demonstrated towards her.  In John 4: 28-29, it says that she went back into the city and told the men, “Come and see a Man who told me all things that I ever did.  Could this be the Christ?”  And what is so incredible is that we learn in verse 39 that many Samaritans came to faith in Christ because of her testimony.  So what’s my point?  Good question.  My point is that perhaps the mark of a thankful heart is a tongue that gives testimony to God’s blessings in our lives.

So as we approach this Thanksgiving let’s not cheapen the season by settling for a lot of food and football.  But rather, let’s demonstrate our thankfulness by verbally telling others about Jesus, who is not only our Messiah but who has changed our lives.

Dr. Will Langford is Pastor of Great Bridge Baptist Church.  He is a native of Cincinnati, Ohio and a graduate of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky.

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