Luke 17:11-19 (NLT) As Jesus continued on toward Jerusalem, he reached the border between Galilee and Samaria. As he entered a village there, ten lepers stood at a distance, crying out, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!” He looked at them and said, “Go show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed of their leprosy. One of them, when he saw that he was healed, came back to Jesus, shouting, “Praise God!” He fell to the ground at Jesus’ feet, thanking him for what he had done. This man was a Samaritan. Jesus asked, “Didn’t I heal ten men? Where are the other nine? Has no one returned to give glory to God except this foreigner?” And Jesus said to the man, “Stand up and go. Your faith has healed you.”
At this time of year, a lot of people are caught up in the hustle and bustle of preparing big meals, buying wonderful gifts for loved ones, and generally being caught up in our many blessings. We need to take some time to stop and just tell the Lord, “thank you.” We spend so much of our energy on our blessings that we have little left over for the Blessor. We utter a quick prayer of thanksgiving around the dinner table, as we plan our black Friday shopping excursions.
As we see from our text today, a little bit of gratitude goes a long way. Ten lepers were healed, but only one stopped to see what the Lord had done and turned back. He didn’t lose anything by taking a few moments to thank the Healer and praise God. Sometimes we have to stop and see what the Lord has already done, instead of scrambling ahead to the next blessing. The nine were doing exactly as they were told, which was to go show themselves to the priests. But that one was overcome with gratefulness as he witnessed his healing. He turned back to express his thankfulness to the Lord.
If we would take the time to thank God for what we have and for what He has already done, we will find ourselves happier and much more content. Thanksgiving will mean so much more to us, if we aren’t constantly planning what’s coming next. Enjoy the blessings of the Lord, fall at His feet, and thank Him for a while. When we focus on everything God has done for us, we have no room to complain about what we don’t have.