“Were not ten cleansed? Where are the nine? Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?” And he said to him, “Rise and go your way; your faith has made you well.” (Luke 17:17-19)
When a child does well in life, the parents are quick to say: “That is my child.” But when the child is not doing well, you hear either parent say to the other: “This your child…” In the same way, when unfortunate things come our way, we are very quick to shift blame and too often we end up blaming God for allowing such come our way.
Nevertheless, when good things happen unto us we simply take it for granted. We assume it is just normal, that we were simply lucky or that we are rewarded for hard work, intelligence or connection. Like the other nine lepers, we find it very difficult to acknowledge, appreciate and praise God.
According to the book of Wisdom, nothing happens in this world without God knowing: “For the Lord of all will not stand in awe of any one, nor show deference to greatness; because he himself made both small and great, and he takes thought for all alike.” (Wisdom 6:7).
In response to the leper who came to give thanks, Jesus said: “Your faith has made you well.” This implies that there is a connection between gratitude and faith. It takes faith to realise that the good things which come our way are never by chance. By giving God thanks, we become ever more conscious of His power. The more we try to count our blessings, the more blessings we discover.
However, if we cannot thank God, it is because we do not believe God has done anything. As a result of our lack of appreciation, even while we are praying, we keep asking ourselves: “Can God do this for me? What has He ever done for me?” By the time we are done praying, we are more worried than ever. To the ungrateful heart, prayers are a waste of time; a reminder of their pains and the increase of their fears.
Learn to count your blessings so as not to have a negative attitude to life. To every cloud, there is a silver lining. No matter how tough things may be, you will always have something to be grateful for. Deliberately thank God all the time so that you can have confidence to ask from God when you are in need. Ten lepers were cured, but only one was made well. Being cured from our problems is one thing, gratitude makes us whole, complete and well.
Let us pray: Lord Jesus, deepen my Faith. Amen.