ARE YOU THANKFUL?
We have all seen the movies where someone is about to die or is held captive by another. Then a third person comes along and frees the victim or keeps them from dying and we all celebrate! The person saved is so grateful that they devote the rest of their life to the one who had saved them. In comedies, which I really enjoy, this can lead to some really humorous situations.
But like I said, it is in the movies-- not in reality. Or is it? If we believe the Bible is God’s word and the events in it aren’t fiction, but reality, then the following events would be true. Luke records in chapter seven the account of a woman who wipes Jesus’ feet with her hair after wetting them with her tears and pouring perfume on them (v37-50). That tremendous act is what we remember about the story, but that is not the point of the story.
The essence of what God wants us to understand about this event isn’t the act, but the attitude. Yes, the picture of her tears dripping down on Jesus’ feet and the dirt and stench from walking the dusty roads being wiped into her hair will really paint a picture that sticks with you. It is not a pleasant picture. But the why is the important aspect here though that usually gets overlooked. The key to all of this is in v47 where it talks about sins. One who is forgiven little--loves little. One who is forgiven much--loves much.
We think we are good people. What usually makes us good, or bad, is how we stack up to the person next to us. As long as we are “better than” someone else, we feel good. If we aren’t quite as good, then we feel bad. But neither of these are important when it comes to salvation. Salvation has nothing to do with our “goodness”. It has everything to do with His Grace.
That takes us back to the woman who was going to need to go home and wash the dirt out of her hair. She realized she was a sinner. She realized who Jesus was. Her life was forever changed. On November 4th, 36 years ago at approximately ten o’clock on a Thursday night my life was changed forever. I had come to the realization that I was a sinner and I was baptized. Was I a good guy? Yea, but until that time I wasn’t a forgiven guy. It was at that point that not only was I a good guy, but more importantly a forgiven one.
No, I haven’t washed any feet with my hair and my tears are not shared in public. However, my attitude became much like the woman God inspired Luke to tell us about. I am a forgiven sinner and like those characters from the movies, my life is now forever indebted and eternally devoted to the one who had saved me.
It isn’t a one time act but a lifestyle. Do I mess up? Oh yea, but that forgiveness is still there--thus the continual thankfulness played out in the way I live. This Thanksgiving as we are thankful for the abundance we have, don’t let it stop there. Commit to being thankful daily, by serving the one who saved you in the way you live your life.