Resources for Pentecost +18
St. Thomas Day - St. Thomas, the Doubter
O God, our God, your world is a puzzlement to us.
We pray our "give-me" prayers day after day and often fail to thank you. We
are so like the nine lepers who failed to even give thanks for the cure they
received. So now we turn from our selfishness and thank you for the challenges
you have placed before us and for the power you have made available to us to
deal with those challenges. May we be willing to seek your will and guidance
in our lives. Keep
us ever mindful of your presence and grateful for your gifts. These things we
ask in the strong name of Christ Jesus, your most precious gift to us. Amen.
for all Pentecost+21 resources
Rev. Frank Schaefer
love the fact that this one man returns to Jesus. He really teaches us
all a lesson on what true thanksgiving and true loyalty looks like.
For saying thanks to somebody for something they have done is not just a
matter of etiquette. It’s not just doing what is polite and expected. A
genuine show of gratitude for something another person has done for us
out of their compassion and generosity demands loyalty.
As you all know, I love history and, when it comes to the age of
chivalry, I am a romantic. While I decry the injustice with which women
were often treated as well as people of “lower” classes, I do like
certain values that were important to people of that age, among others
the concept of loyalty. If someone saved your life, you felt a loyalty
to this person for the rest of your life. And one of the greatest joys
would be if you could return the favor and save the life of that person.
Jesus expected some form of loyalty from these lepers, but only one of
them returned. That’s 10 percent. Perhaps I have become a cynic, but
perhaps that’s about what we can expect from human beings in terms of
loyalty today: 10 percent.
What about us? I think it is pretty safe to say that we were all lepers
at one point; people without purpose, people without hope, people
without salvation, without God. We all were living a life of sin and
destruction, without Godly values and dignity. We were living
egotistical lives, not caring for our neighbor and we removed ourselves
from God and from the communion with God's people.
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