by Roland Caldwell
DETROIT, MI – I have a 2-year-old son in the process of learning to talk. For months now my wife and I have dedicated hours to teaching him simple words to help him explain what he sees, what he wants, and how he feels.
At the moment my son has a long list of words he can say clearly, but like many toddlers his favorite word to say is “NO”. He doesn’t always place the word in the proper place, but he loves to use it when he can.
If you were to come to my house, I’m sure you would hear him chanting it loudly to me or my wife at some point, because my son loves to respond to everything with “NO”. Contrary to my son’s belief my favorite word to hear him use isn’t no. In fact, it’s not a word but a phrase.
My favorite phrase to hear him say is “Thank You”. Now, don’t get me wrong I have taught him to say thank you as a respectful response to those that give, share or provide something for him. However, it's different when I hear him say it from a place of genuinely feeling thankful.
There’s no greater feeling as a parent or individual than to hear someone tell you “Thank You”, and for someone to show gratitude for something you’ve done, even if you would have done it without recognition.
When was the last time as a child of God, you told Him “Thank you”? Can you recall the last time you evaluated what God has given you, and said, “Father I thank you”? It’s in Luke chapter 17 verses 11-19, where we get a glimpse of what being thankful truly looks like.
In this text, the word of God recounts how Jesus heals 10 people with leprosy. During that time, leprosy meant you were socially cast out, isolated and abandoned. Nobody wanted to be around lepers, nor did they accept them into their home or social spaces.
One day ten lepers cried out to Jesus saying, “Have mercy on us.” They cried out for Jesus to heal them from their illness, and without hesitation he did. Jesus did not reject them like the world, or overlook them because of their condition, but he spoke into their lives with grace.
Jesus healed the ten lepers, and sent them on their way healed. They went off to show the priest the miracles that had taken place. While running to the temple one of the healed lepers did something strange and unusual. He turned around and came back to Jesus, fell to his feet, and began thanking Jesus for what he had done.
Out of all ten lepers, only one came back to tell Jesus thank you. My prayer for you is to be strange and unusual during this Thanksgiving season and tell God “Thank You”.
Thankfulness, however, is not just shown by what you say, but it is also in what you do. Show God how thankful you are by honoring your family, friends, and neighbors. Show God through your obedience, sacrifice, and willingness to serve others, and revere God by going back and telling him what you're thankful for.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Roland Caldwell Jr is the pastor and church plant of The House Church in Detroit, Michigan. Pastor Roland is married to his beautiful wife Tedi, and they have a son named Noah. While serving the city of Detroit Pastor Roland also holds the position of Vice Moderator of the Greater Detroit Association.