Some things you can’t just be told to do and do. Like be grateful, loving, faithful, gracious or THANKFUL! We need to be motivated, inspired and well… feel it! At least initially… because over time with some good habits and ways of thinking we also know that we can teach ourselves to live more in these things. But what is the initial source of this inspiration? I don’t think it is just being told to do them. The account of the healing of the ten lepers by Jesus in Luke 17:11-19 helps us to see it. It’s only when the Samaritan leper puts together the healing with the fact that Jesus is that priest he ought be, showing himself so that we realise our thankfulness arises out of an encounter with the living Lord. From there we can draw on that, and keep encountering and keep being thankful. Sometimes I’ve heard this text on the 10 lepers preached as a call to thankfulness. That makes me roll my eyes a bit because it’s first and foremost an insight into the living power of Christ and how he changes us. From that springs thankfulness to God as a way of being / doing life / worshipping God in all things. From the outer – an encounter with Christ – to the inner response of thankfulness and back out again to thankfulness for all he has done.
October 10, 2019 Pastor Matt Bishop