Friday, September 29, 2006

Newsletter: Counting our Blessings

Emmett Maxon used to tell a story about two angels. One angel was called the "Gimme" angel. It was his job to answer all the requests people made in their prayers. This particular angel never had any time off. He was tired and ragged from running around handling the ever mounting pile of requests. The other angel was called the "Thank-you" angel. He managed all the prayers of gratitude and thanksgiving. This angel was always relaxed and rested. He had so little to do that he took up golf and quilting.

I think Emmett’s story reveals less about the heavenly host than it does our own humanity. We are blessed in so many ways, yet we seem to take all of it for granted. We are prone to ingratitude. Jesus himself noted this tendency. After healing ten men of leprosy, only one returned to thank him.

Jesus asked, "Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?"(Luke 17:17-18)
As rare as gratitude is, it is the essence of the Christian life. Being released from the bondage of sin and reconciled to God by grace alone, we are stirred to live in thanksgiving.

Our congregation has recently begun a process of discernment. As a church, we are listening carefully to God’s call and responding to that call. In our recent "Conference on the Past," we realized how blessed we are. It is now our opportunity to respond in gratitude. From now until Thanksgiving (November 23), we are counting our blessings.

We need your help. In every Sunday School class, circle meeting, committee meeting, and the like take a moment to jot down a few of God’s blessings. As families gather around the dinner table, write down a couple reasons why we are thankful. Then send them to the church. We have something to be thankful about. Let’s return and give our praise.

No comments: