One In Ten

9 Oct

One Out Of Ten Say, “Thank You!”

“It seems we should be counting our blessings that we are still alive, and not the victim of someone out to commit mass murder,” Ed said. My old neighbor from Saskatchewan was barely home from helping his family in Edmonton when a man acted with murderous intent there. The man ran through a police barrier hitting a policeman and then got out of his car and started stabbing the injured policeman several times. “How the policeman was able, to fight, the man off is a wonder,” Ed said. The same man then intentionally hit people on the sidewalks with his vehicle while being pursued by the police. Four people needed to be hospitalized. “It is a dangerous situation when individuals or groups set out to kill or injure as many people as they can find near them,” Ed concluded.

It is true that we take peace and personal safety for granted. We do not expect to be the victim of someone set on mass killings. We may tend to take our lives, and who, and what we have, as what we deserve or have earned. The hardest arithmetic to master is counting our blessings. Counting our blessings is not something we do automatically. All life long, we are challenged to grow a thankful heart within us, in both the best and the worst of experiences.

If a person isn’t thankful for what he or she has – will he or she be thankful for what he or she gets?  A grateful heart sees the truth of the ancient prayer, “For what I have received may the Lord make me truly thankful, and, for what I have not received.” God gives us 86,400 seconds each day of our lives; it takes about a second to say, ‘thank you,’ to God and others. Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.

In the Bible, we find a situation of nine out of ten men, suffering from leprosy being ungrateful for the gift of healing. Jesus met the ten outcast men as he was going into a village, these men were unable to be near healthy people. From a distance, the group suffering from leprosy called in a loud voice, “Jesus, Master, have pity on us.”

Leprosy was a dreaded disease in the time of Jesus. Anyone suspected of having the disease had to go to the priest for examination. If declared infected, the person had to live alone, apart from his family and others. He was not allowed to come within six feet of any other human. Lepers or those suffering from leprosy had to live together as a group, apart from all others until they got better or died.

When Jesus saw the ten lepers asking him for help, he told them to go and show themselves to the priests. As the ten men went, they became cleansed of their leprosy. Only one of the ten lepers who saw that he was healed returned to Jesus, praising God and thanking Jesus. He threw himself at Jesus’ feet in thanksgiving for his healing. Jesus questioned, “Where are the other nine as all ten were cured of their leprosy?” Where are we when it is time to thank God?

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