Chapter 1 Replace a complaining attitude.….
With a Thankful Attitude.
Say it in a sentence: Thankfulness is the attitude that perfectly displaces my sinful tendency to complain and thereby release joy and blessing into my life.
We are putting off our old attitudes of complaining, and putting on our new one of thankfulness. Thankfulness is so important to God. We go to Luke 17:12-13 to see the story of ten leprous men who were healed and how many do you think were thankful? Also who was thankful was an important factor of the scripture.
12 As he was going into a village, ten men who had leprosy[b] met him. They stood at a distance 13 and called out in a loud voice, “Jesus, Master, have pity on us!”
Men with leprosy were not able to be by anyone since they were considered unclean until told by a priest that they were healed. So they stood at a distance and called out loudly to Jesus to heal them. We are always asking for something aren’t we, but healing leprosy may have been something very worthwhile to ask.
4 When he saw them, he said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed.
15 One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. 16 He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him—and he was a Samaritan.
So Jesus says ok go see the priests, He didn’t need to touch them, they were healed as they walked to see the priests. Before they got to the priests one man saw he was healed and turned around to come praise Jesus. Think of this….. you haven’t seen your family in forever, haven’t held them close, kisses your wife, you have been spat on and treated like dirt….. All you have to do now is go see the priest and you will be lifted of this ban. Instead of going with the selfish choice; this man turns around and goes to praise Jesus.
15 But one of them, seeing that he was healed, returned and, with a loud voice, gave glory to God. 16 He fell facedown at His feet, thanking Him. And he was a Samaritan. (HCSV)
In the HCSV version the scripture says in a loud voice! He was not shy about this, he did not write Jesus a letter, or bake him some cookies. He was probably skipping and laughing and telling every single person he saw on the way back to Jesus. He gave the glory to God, fell on his face in the dust THANKING Jesus. I like that some versions say thanked, but i like thanking… seems like he over and over and again thanked Jesus. I could imagine him kissing his feet and thanking Jesus and crying and laughing and praising. What an emotional filled moment. To add the cherry to the sundae. This man was a Samaritan. This is very significant. The Samaritans were hated by the jews. They were jews that married outside of the blood line and the jews treated them as though they were not as good as they were even though they both worshipped the same God. Of all the men to be thankful to a Jew, The King of Jews, a Samaritan is lowest on the list. All ten of the men had the choice… only 1 chose to be thankful. Just like the 12 scouts .. only 2 decided to be faithful to God. To have a good attitude.
Christ notices those who are ungrateful.
So i think to myself were those other 9 men ungrateful? Were they selfish to go on their way to be freed from this bondage? OR were they ungrateful because they did not thank who was responsible for this miracle. I know if I was healed and able to see my family again I would be so happy so thankful, but we must also make sure we express, and show this thankfulness. So do you think Christ noticed that no one else thanked Him?
17 Then Jesus said, “Were not 10 cleansed? Where are the nine?
Obviously Jesus knew the answer, this is rhetorical. He was pointing this fact out to everyone else. Showing an example of a thankless attitude.
18 Didn’t any return[j] to give glory to God except this foreigner?”
Jesus makes it a point to state that this man who has been treated wrong by the jews still was the only one to come and be thankful. If he could overcome his social injustices to express sincere gratitude, what excuses do the other men have?
19 And He told him, “Get up and go on your way. Your faith has made you well.”[k]
Jesus is not talking about heal well, since He just healed them all. He is talking about being well in a deeper way than those who refused to be thankful. I would always prefer a deeper well!
Faith grows in the soil of thankfulness.
If we acknowledge that God is our provider. God is the creator. He wakes us each morning. He gave us life. When we do this we begin to express faith in Him. If someone outside of Christ; a non believer, is willing to acknowledge there is a God they can began receiving sprouts! In romans 1 Pail wrote
- God created the universe.
- Within the heart of every human being is an awareness of the reality of God.
- Apart from thankfulness, our awareness of God will always be suppressed.
How could anyone say there is no God? Look around, this world is too complex, we are too complex to just happened! More people know this than not, but to understand, agree, or admit it is a choice. At the root of mankind’s rejection of God is a resolute unwillingness to be thankful.
Thankfulness is far more than saying the right words.
Go is not looking for the polite thank you that we give to everyone anytime we get service at a restaurant, a hair cut, someone opens the door for us, or give us a compliment. This is nice, but God is looking for deeper. (Doesn’t He always!?) Is your thankfulness genuine or obligatory?
Look at these three levels of thankfulness.
- Elementary level: Be thankful in the most basic sense. sacrifice to be thankful. You may not feel thankful, but you can say it! Fine Lord Yes you got me out of that situation, thanks.
- High School level: In every situation, you can find something to be thankful for.
- Graduate School: Be thankful for all things. This is the thankfulness that trusts God and is grateful even for the bad things.
We may not know what the Lord is doing, but we do need to trust that He loves us and wants us to have joy.
Thankfulness is a choice.
Thankfulness is a choice that we make. It’s just as real as any other decision. We are equipped., God made us with the capacity to express gratitude. It’s a choice.
- Point One: Thankfulness is a decision
- Point two: Thankfulness is a decision based on reality
If we look around and see all that we could be thankful for and overlook, we would really boost our gratitude.
- Point three: Thankfulness is a life-changing decision
We can choose to live in that dark wilderness, or we can choose to live in a high-altitude attitude; focusing on the positive. Focusing on the negative or having a complaining heart, we can miss opportunities and lessons God sends to us.
Let’s talk a Solution
- Are you a thankful person? Which school would you be in?
- Do you see the blessings of thankfulness in your life? What percentage is positive and what is negative thinking?
- Are you choosing thankfulness over complaining moment by moment?
“Remember, attitude are patterns of thinking formed over a long period of time. But those long periods of time are accumulate moment by moment and choice by choice.”