Friday, April 14 2017
Gratitude & Wholeness
We were not told the number of years these lepers had had this ailment all we know is that they were all healed but one through his unique attitude of gratitude receive a higher dimension of healing, the entirety of healing - he was made WHOLE meaning inside out - spiritually and physically! What does it mean to be made whole? I particularly like the definition that says ‘the state of being unbroken or undamaged’ and from the context of this passage you will agree with me that leprosy breaks and damages a man. What kind of leprosy is breaking you or has caused damage to your life or family? Is it sickness like these men, is it financial, emotional or marital instability. I know an effective key that can break its effect in your life and family – it’s called gratitude. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you -1 Thessalonians 5:18. As you praise God this month for both the small and big things you shall be made whole. Whatever is broken or damaged in your life will heed the Master's voice and you will no longer be deficient in any area in Jesus name. This grateful leper was not carried away with what he didn't have, in fact he didn’t see what he didn’t have rather he saw what he had and appreciated God for that, little wonder his own case became different. I pray as you make the choice to give thanks; God will make your own case different. Perhaps the other 9 lepers were used to seeing miracles hence they took it for granted but the one that turned back to say thank you was a Samaritan, he was gobsmacked by the wonders of God that he made a U turn to say “wow this is awesome, thank you!” Beloved don't be too accustomed to God’s modus operandi (method of operation) to the level of derision. Don't take the smallest things of life for granted. In addition let’s learn to prioritize and gratitude to God should be made top priority – for those things we have that no amount of money can buy. When we fail to set our priorities right we fail to pay attention to small but important things which might cause us to miss it; may you not miss it in Jesus name. Maybe the other 9 had a long to-do list (things they had longed to do when they were lepers) and had gratitude somewhere at the bottom of the list no knowing that The master’s business requires urgency, according to James Allen, “No duty is more urgent than that of returning thanks.” Little did they know that their wholeness was tied to their gratitude.
You cannot lobby for gratitude maybe that is why Jesus did not compel them to say thank you even though thanksgiving is one of His attributes such that it precedes whatever He does…. And Jesus lifted up his eyes, and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me (John 11:41). Perhaps the other 9 lepers were waiting to be taught forgetting that gratitude cannot be taught, it is a response that stems from the heart - from the depth of the heart! Before the leper made the decision to turn back, he would have thought it through; he would have had a moment where he would say in his heart, “so my skin can be this clean? Hey wait a minute I didn’t even say thank you” - prayerful thoughts gives birth to thanksgiving while vain thoughts promotes ungratefulness. Replace complaints with praise and as you praise Him God will take care of you. This month try several ways of showing gratitude- burst forth with praises and adoration to your Maker. Give him your tithe - a tenth afterall only one out of the 10 lepers came back, as you give to him out of gratitude he will make the your income whole and untouchable for devourers. Show gratitude by returning to give him your skills and your talents etc and He will ensure you are whole health wise and no part of your body will be consumed by any sickness. As you willingly give Him your time in soul winning, in attending programmes, He will make you present – 60 seconds, 60 minutes, 24 hours and you will not die before your time.
Have you taken even a minute to say thank you to Him recently? Let’s cultivate the attitude of gratitude, nurture it by making thanksgiving a way of life, look beyond what you can see and begin to see through the eye of faith that is why Jesus said to him in verse 19, ‘your faith has made you whole!’ This means that only by faith can we truly give thanks and that is why Jesus thanked God before He called Lazarus forth. In which area do you need wholeness? Why don’t you spend quality time each day this month to say thank you Lord! It is the only weapon that can turn not enough to more than enough. As a church let us go ahead and say to Him, “LORD Inspiration House Tralee can see what You have done and have returned to say thank you LORD! For everything you’ve given us – for 15 years of your love, faithfulness, mercy and grace. For fighting all our battles, for defending us and upholding us through the good and the bad; for your unflinching support and for answering our prayers, THANK YOU LORD!
Pastor Lekan Oyewande