A Samaritan Thanksgiving

1 Corinthians 1:4 "I always thank my God for you because of his grace given you in Christ Jesus."

Dear CBC Family,

I received word a couple of hours ago that Titus isn’t having his spleen removed today because his numbers came up a bit. While the platelet count didn’t rise enough to cancel the surgery permanently, the doctors have decided to wait a few more days to see if they will go higher. His platelets went from 2 to 9. If they go to 40 they will cancel the surgery. Please continue to pray with me that God will bring Titus through this very difficult trial.

Today is the day before Thanksgiving and while 2021 has been a really hard year for so many of us I want to give you a story that might help us all to be a little more grateful regardless of circumstances.

The Bible tells a very moving story of Jesus doing a miraculous healing for ten individuals suffering from Leprosy. This is recorded for us in Luke 17:11-19, and while it shares the incredible fact that Jesus is our healer, it also gives a powerful lesson on thankfulness.

If you take time to read the story, you will see that out of the ten who experienced healing from this horrible disease, only one of them took the opportunity to turn around and thank Jesus face to face. I expect it was the first time in this man’s life he was actually thankful.

Luke 17:15-16 “And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, returned, and with a loud voice glorified God, 16 and fell down on his face at His feet, giving Him thanks. And he was a Samaritan.”

I never really thought about the fact this man was a Samaritan. He was one who was not part of the covenant people, one who was doubly looked down upon. Being a Samaritan, and a Leper, would leave him ostracized and despised by all the Israelites, but not by Jesus. Spiritually speaking, each of us were like that poor man at one time “having no hope and without God in the world.” Eph 2:12. But God changed all that.

I suppose that former leper had some bad days after Jesus healed him but I bet he never quit being thankful for the tremendous grace he received on that hot afternoon. This challenges me to remember how the same Lord delivered us from something much worse, and fatal, than Leprosy. He delivered us from sin, death, Satan and ourselves. He adopted us into His family and set His love upon us.

Paul says in 1 Corinthians 13 “Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things.” This love from God makes us a family here and now. This love accepts you, respects you, and sticks with you through thick and thin. Although we are not related by lineage, I am very thankful to call you my family and I am thankful to our Father who has made this so!

To my brothers and sisters of Community Bible Church may this day fill your heart with renewed hope and a grateful spirit. If the Lord loves a cheerful giver, so He likewise must love a cheerful thanks-giver. Have an unforgettable Thanksgiving. You are loved.

I’ll see you this weekend for a special message from Romans 11 entitled “Continue in His Kindness.”

Grateful,

Pastor Scott