Thursday, February 4, 2010
We should always be in a constant state of Thanksgiving... for we have much to be thankful for. When the one man cured of leprosy returned to Christ and thanked Him, Jesus was joyful because he had come to give thanks. When Jesus suffered His agony in the garden... perhaps He suffered in mind because of all those who would not appreciate His Gift. We are a consolation to Him when we are thankful. By showing thankfulness we bring God great joys and pave the way for us to receive many more gifts. For if we are not thankful for the first gift received, why would He think that we wanted the next gift?
We must be thankful for our life and "daily bread", that is, daily necessities. For if we give thanks to God for these things, and admit that they are gifts from Him, will He not continue to give from His abundance? If we have truly given our lives to Him, every moment we draw breath and every care we should receive is His, a gift from Him to us. For our vocations especially, we must be thankful, and for our unique identities... for these are the signs of our special inheritance in heaven.
Often, there are those who think that love and faith is enough... but if they are not thankful for all God has done for them, how can they truly claim to love and believe? We must recall that God doesn't press His Gifts upon us. If we are not thankful, we are showing Him that we do not like what we receive. Christ's gift on the cross is very special... it is a gift offered freely to all, if it is rejected or receives ungrateful acceptance, He will feel great pain. Is it love to make Him feel this pain? Is it faith to not be thankful, to consider the gifts of God as earned? No, but if we truly love God, we will be thankful.
If our understanding of the gifts of Christ is complete, we will not overlook the gifts of our friends. We will be ready to thank all those we know for every favor, for we will realize that even our lives were not earned by us, nor anything else, and that all is given freely. Thanksgiving can sometimes be translated into humility... for if one is humble, he is full of unending thankfulness.
If we show thanksgiving in this way, we ourselves become the beloved children of Christ. He delights in our thanks and freely sheds many more gifts upon us. To our friends, also, our thankfulness will stand out. We will be agreeable to them for our loving and meekness in thanksgiving. Truly, to be thankful is to show a desire for harmony... the harmony of heaven. Let us make thanksgiving a persistent virtue so that we may rightly follow our vocations.