One time theologian, H. A. Ironside was eating in a crowded restaurant. All of the other places seats in the place were filled, except the one at his table. A man asked if he could sit there and Ironside was glad to let him do so.
Shortly, Ironside’s food was brought to the table. Upon the arrival of his meal, he closed his eyes and bowed his head. A few moments later he looked up into the stare of the man seated across from him.
“Is there something wrong?” the man asked. “Are you sick? Do You have a headache?”
“No. I was just returning thanks to God for my food.”
The man frowned. “Oh, I don’t believe in all that religious stuff. When my food arrives, I just start eating without any hesitation.”
“I understand,” replied Ironside. “I have a dog that does the same thing.”
Gratitude has two important elements to it:
- A thankful recognition of individual gifts.
- A reverent appreciation toward the Giver.
As a writer, I am grateful for the power of story. But I realize that this wonderful blessing does not exist in a vacuum. Behind the words there is a loving God who cares for us far more than we can imagine. To “count my blessings” without acknowledging Him as the source is a waste of words.
Real praise is seldom random or accidental and it always has a target. One of the beautiful things about being human is that God gives us the ability to intelligently verbalize our thankfulness to Him. One of the key differences between us and animals is the unique opportunity for relationship between us and our Creator. We can relate to Him with an intimacy reserved for no other part of creation. And with that privilege comes a great responsibility.
I write (or preach & teach) out of a deep gratitude for His grace and mercy in my life. God would still be God without me. But I would be nothing without Him.
I thank God for you. Thank you for being a part of my blog, and for sharing my writing journey with me. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.