Thoughts for the Month

‘I will thank you forever, because of what you have done.’ (Psalm 52 v.9) ‘Thank you’ – how often do we say those words? I suspect not often enough. For some reason, giving thanks can be difficult. We are given a gift of some kind and what is our reaction? ‘You shouldn’t have!’ ‘You didn’t need to….’ ‘It wasn’t necessary…..’ Why is it that giving a present appears to be so much easier than receiving one? This month we often celebrate Harvest when we give thanks for all the fruits of the earth and sea that the great creator has given us. That is what we should do, but, only once a year? Surely, we should give thanks every day. As a child, every meal began with a ‘grace’ thanking God for the food we were about to eat. I used to do the same with my children when they were small but sadly, somehow it stopped. Even if we don’t say it out loud, we, as individuals, can still thank God for all his good gifts to us before we start each meal. Sometimes, a ‘thank you’ comes at a most unexpected moment. One day, I was walking to town. A man, who I didn’t know, caught me up and started to walk past me, saying, ‘Excuse me.’ As he did so, without thinking I smiled and said, ‘Isn’t it lovely, the sun is shining and the wind has dropped.’ It really was a beautiful day. The man stopped suddenly and looked at me. ‘Thank you, so much,’ he said. He then walked in step with me explaining that he was on his way to a jeweller in town. It was his daughter’s birthday and he was going to buy her the ring that she had seen and so wanted, but neither she nor her husband could afford it. ‘You see,’ he said, ‘my wife died six months ago – she was my world. I am so lonely now. My daughter has been so kind, helping me to keep going, so this is a special something to say ‘thank you.’ He chatted all the way to town and then we parted, but not before he said to me – ‘Thank you so much for that smile and speaking to me. You’ve no idea how much it meant to me. Life’s been pretty grim the last few months.’ What had I done? No, I have no idea, but it is not the first time that I have seen an amazing reaction to a smile and a few words. Now, please don’t think that I am ‘blowing my own trumpet’, praising myself. That certainly wasn’t the point of the story – rather – that it can be the smallest, sometimes unthinking thing that can have the greatest, and most unexpected impact. I do thank the Lord that what I did was the right thing at that time. Let’s be honest, a smile and a few words cost nothing and yet the effect can be surprisingly huge. How often do we say ‘thank you’ for a smile, a few words, an unexpected something that just lifts our spirits? How often do we look at nature, the wonder of the countryside around us, the magnificence of the cliffs and the power of the sea, and give a quiet ‘thank you’ to their creator? How often do we look at our partner, our children, our grandchildren, our friends, and not only thank God for them but thank them for being there for us? Throughout history God sent prophets to his people, the Israelites, often to warn them that they were straying from His way. Sometimes they listened, more often than not, they didn’t. So, eventually, He not only sent His own, dearly Beloved Son to teach His people, but He asked His Son to die for the sins of His people. That gift was so great. It was not just for the Israelites, but for us all. Everything we have and everything we are, is through the graciousness of the Almighty. How often do we say ‘thank you,’ and really mean it? ‘Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!’ (2 Cor. Ch. 9 v. 15)

Page last updated: 1st October 2017 8:34 AM