Yesterday, we learned about a special ceremony that was held in honor of those who were healed from leprosy. However, even after this ritual cleansing, any leper seeking to be reintroduced into society had to stay on the outskirts of town for another eight days, just to be sure. In the interest of not infecting anyone else, they slept outside, and before they showed themselves to the priest one last time, they were required to shave off every bit of their hair — from head to toe. Once they had been thoroughly examined and finally declared clean, they took a bath, offered a sacrifice, and received fresh clothes. After that, they were allowed to go home to their families and communities. And this is where the story picks up in Luke 17:17. Though all ten men were healed, only one returned to Jesus to thank Him, and he happened to be a Samaritan. Though the other nine were heading north to Galilee from Jerusalem and probably would have passed by the Lord on the road, they couldn’t be troubled to go a few minutes out of their way to express gratitude. And while it’s easy to understand where they were coming from — after all, they hadn’t seen their loved ones for years and just wanted to get back to them — their failure to say a simple “thank you” serves as a powerful reminder to us.
My friend, it’s good to be aware of your blessings, but never forget to thank your Source. He’s provided you with all good things to enjoy, and He’s delighted when you give Him the glory. It brings joy to His heart to watch you relish His lavish gifts, and He bids you remember that a life of gratitude is the most abundant existence you can have. Cultivate a heart full of thankfulness, and not only will you be uplifted and encouraged, you’ll be totally transformed!