Giving God our Applause!!
Good Morning!! I hope Everyone had a Wonderful Thanksgiving!! I Love hearing all the thanks being offered to God on this day! It is SO special to hear friends and family offer heart-felt thanks and adoration to our Father who gives to us every good and perfect gift. It just so happened that we had this beautiful Christmas music playing softly in the background this year as my family took turns telling God how thankful they were. It was thrilling to listen to them speak from the heart with this music accompanying them! I could almost hear the applause of heaven with each person sharing, and yet as sweet as this day is to me, I cannot help but wonder if we take this kind of Thankfulness with us into the other days of the year?
Before I left for Uganda, my husband and I had the pleasure of going to a wonderful concert with a couple of our friends. As is usual, when the band was finished with their concert they thanked everyone and left the stage. Now, the crowd erupted into applause for this band because of how incredible they were. They clapped and cheered and yelled their adoration until this band came back for an encore. I remember thinking at the time, “I wonder what would happen in our lives if we were to applaud God in that way?” What if we were to erupt into praise of our King every time He moved in our life? What if we were to clap and cheer, and yell out our adoration as we celebrated our Savior? It made me wonder if the more we clap for our God, the more likely He might be to come back for an encore? If we are able to make this kind of noise for other human beings, how much more should we shout, and clap, and cheer in thanksgiving to the King of Kings?
Most of the time, however, I find myself reminded of the passage in Luke 17 that tells of 10 lepers that Jesus healed. You may know this story. As the lepers went away from Jesus they were cleansed, and chapter 17 tells us this, “And One of them, when he saw he was healed, returned and with a loud voice Glorified God, and fell down on his face, at His feet, giving Him THANKS. And He was a Samaritan! So Jesus answered and said, “Were there not ten cleansed? But where are the nine? Were there not anyone else found who RETURNED to give GLORY to God except this foreigner?” And so He said to him, “Arise, go your way. Your faith has made you well!” – Luke 17:15-19 There is so much powerful truth in what took place here, but first it is important to know that the word, “Thanks” means to Be Grateful, to express Gratitude! Notice that only ONE RETURNED to express his gratitude to Jesus! How often do we notice this in our own culture, our own families, and in our own selves? We have such a consumer mentality, we desire instant gratification, and there are times I feel like we just expect God to move without giving Him much consideration. These other men saw that they were cleansed and they went on their excited way giving no attention to the One who cleansed them! But something Jesus says gives us a clue as to a possible reason why that might have been. Jesus tells the one who came back, “Your FAITH has made you well!” Now the scripture tells us that this man came back to give THANKS to God for healing him, but Jesus tells him your FAITH has made you well!! Do you see the link between THANKSGIVING and FAITH?? When we come to God to Express our Gratitude, we are giving the EVIDENCE of our FAITH!! When we Express our gratefulness to Him we are declaring that we believe Him! That we believe Who He is, What He has done for us, How He has healed us, and how He has freed us! If we are THANKING Him, we are BELIEVING HIM!! Now these other men that Jesus healed, might have thought that Jesus was some prophet, or healer, but they did not equate Him with God, because they did not Give Glory and THANKS to HIM. And that is why I believe Jesus tells the Samaritan that his FAITH has made him WELL!!! He was already healed physically like the other nine men, but when he returned to give THANKS to GOD, this Thanksgiving was the evidence of his belief IN Jesus, and now Jesus could say to him, “Your FAITH has made you WELL!” He was not just healed physically, but because of his faith He was made WELL spiritually!! This impacted me greatly as I saw how powerfully THANKS and FAITH are related!! I want to be the ONE who returns to Jesus Every time to declare my THANKS for ALL He has done, and for All that He is!! I want my FAITH to be seen by the THANKS I give! I want to Applaud SO loudly that He desires to come back for an encore in my life because He knows He can trust me to GIVE HIM THE GLORY AND PRAISE!! Colossians 2:7 tells us that we are to be Established in our FAITH, and ABOUNDING in THANKSGIVING!! Let’s be the ones who Applaud our Lord SO Much and SO loudly that the sound of it will echo in the lives of our children’s children!! I don’t know about you, but I desire a lifetime full of Encores from my Lord and Savior!! PRAISE HIS MIGHTY NAME!!!
This week I want to encourage you to spend time THANKING God In ALL things, from the small to the great! Let us return to Him often and Cheer for Him Loudly! These are a couple scriptures to meditate on:
Luke 17:15-19, Col. 2:7, Ps. 47, Ps. 9:1, Phil. 4:6-7