Thursday, November 22, 2012

Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our thanksgiving.

Everything fades away, but not our gratitude. We shall always pray that God will abundantly bless those who have been so good to us. – St John Bosco

(Gospel text: Lk 17:11-19)
As Jesus continued his journey to Jerusalem,
he traveled through Samaria and Galilee.
As he was entering a village, ten persons with leprosy met him.
They stood at a distance from him and raised their voices, saying,
"Jesus, Master! Have pity on us!"
And when he saw them, he said,
"Go show yourselves to the priests."
As they were going they were cleansed.
And one of them, realizing he had been healed,
returned, glorifying God in a loud voice;
and he fell at the feet of Jesus and thanked him.
He was a Samaritan.
Jesus said in reply,
"Ten were cleansed, were they not?
Where are the other nine?
Has none but this foreigner returned to give thanks to God?"
Then he said to him, "Stand up and go;
your faith has saved you."

Here in the US, we are celebrating Thanksgiving Day and there is a tradition in which everyone goes around the dinner table and says what we’re thankful for. We are often thankful for our family and friends, the food on the table, and even for the early pilgrims, for they are the reason we celebrate today. But how often do we remember to thank God - the source of all of our blessings?  

It’s easy to take God out of holiday celebrations. With all the pumpkin pie, turkey and mashed potatoes we sometimes focus on these things (or on shopping tomorrow) instead of the real reason we have everything - God!

When we are counting our blessings, we need to remember to give thanks to our loving, merciful and protecting father who allows for us to gorge ourselves on cranberry sauce and settle into a lazy midday nap this November day because without him, we would have none of the other things we are thankful for!

Even if we do remember to thank God during our Thanksgiving meal, do we remember to thank Him all year long?

In Luke’s gospel, only one leper came back to show his gratitude for Jesus’ miracle. Out of ten, only one returned to give him thanks. On Thanksgiving Day, many people will proclaim their thanks, but what about the other the 364 days of the year?

Who are you more similar to, the one leper or the other nine?

Learning to Love is learning to Live. We are called to be a People of Thanksgiving. We are called to love.

Happy Thanksgiving

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