Encouragement for Today - Nov. 27, 2006


Encouragement for Today


“Saying Thank You”

Marybeth Whalen


Key Verse:

One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. Luke 17:15 (NIV)



Do you have an attitude of gratitude?  Do you remember to say thank you to God whenever He does something for you—answering a prayer, sending a friend to comfort you, helping you solve a problem creatively, or granting you wisdom?  There are two stories in the Bible about people who remembered to say thank you, and brought about blessings as a result.  I have relied on these stories as an example of the attitude I need to have at all times. 


The first story is of Joseph and is found in Genesis 40.  When Joseph interprets the dreams of the cupbearer, he saves him.  Yet the cupbearer forgets what Joseph did for him and goes on with his life.  Because of his disregard for Joseph’s kindness, Joseph spends several more years in prison.  Eventually, the cupbearer does remember and Joseph’s entire life is changed as a result.  All because the cupbearer remembered to be grateful.


The second story is of Jesus healing the lepers and is found in Luke 17.  Jesus healed ten lepers, yet only one returned to thank Jesus.  Jesus remarked on this man’s grateful attitude, and said, “Your faith has made you well.”  (Luke 17:19)  This verse tells me that God considers having an attitude of gratitude as essential to our faith.  Gratitude is not optional to God.


I have come up with some ways to help yourself have an attitude of gratitude:


  1. Keep a prayer journal to record your requests.  Periodically go back through the journal and record answers to the requests. 
  2. Designate a certain day of the week as your praise day.  On this day, do nothing but praise God, play praise music, read Psalms of praise, reflect on answered prayers, and meditate on who God is. 
  3. Keep a gratitude journal.  Write five things you are thankful for from that day before you go to bed that night.  Be mindful throughout your day of what you will add to your list.
  4. When a prayer is answered or something wonderful happens to you, go to God immediately—before your husband, your best friend or your mom.
  5. Practice being thankful in all circumstances.  Look for something to thank God for no matter what is going on in your life.  Try to look past your circumstances towards God’s plans for you. 


It is so easy to get caught up in the busyness of life and forget to say thank you.  And yet, we know that it pleases God when we remember to come before him with a humble, grateful heart.  This honors God and helps us grow in our faith.


My Prayer for Today:

Dear Lord, I want to have an attitude of gratitude.  I know that you desire for me to have a grateful heart.  Help me to take steps towards always remembering to say “thank you.”  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.


Additional Resources:

An Attitude of Gratitude, ETC Corner


Good to Me  by LaTonya Mason


Celebrating a Christ-centered Christmas  by Sharon Jaynes


Application Steps: 

Read the passages I mentioned in this devotion.  Write down any verses that particularly speak to you.  Now, write down at least one step from the list you are going to take in the next day.


Reflection Points:

What keeps you from thanking God?  Can you think of some other steps you already take or could take to help you remember to go back and thank him?


Power Verses:

I Chronicles 16:8, “Give thanks to the Lord, call on His name; make known among the nations what he has done.”


II Corinthians 9:15, “Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!”


I Thessalonians 5:18, “Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”


Originally published Monday, 27 November 2006.