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  • Writer's pictureKandi Swift

Will You Remember?

Ephesians 5:20 / ESV "Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ."

When it comes time for giving gifts for special occasions, I really enjoy picking out unique and well-thought-out gifts for family and friends. I love to learn what it is they like and take time in choosing something specific and personal just for them. Gift cards are great, and some of my family members actually prefer them, but they’re so quick and easy it makes me feel like I didn’t put much thought or effort into the gift. I want the person to know that I took the time to choose something personal because they are special to me. I also like it when they express thankfulness for the gift. It’s not to seek recognition, but it informs me that I did well in picking out something they liked and lets me know they’re appreciative. Because who likes to give gifts to a person that’s ungrateful? And, wouldn’t you agree that when someone shows sincere gratitude, it causes you to want to do even more for them? Even our Heavenly Father loves to give good gifts to His children, and He desires that we are thankful in all things.

This week, I was reading the story of the ten lepers, found in Luke 17. This is a story of ten men who were considered unclean because of the disease that consumed their bodies. They were highly contagious, so they were cast out of the community in order not to spread the disease to others. When they saw Jesus from afar off, they kept their distance but cried out to Him that He might show them mercy and heal them. It was required that a priest pronounced them to be clean before they could be around anyone, so Jesus instructed the men to go to the priest. As they were on their way, they were cleansed from the disease. When one of the men realized his prayer had been answered and that he was healed, he turned back, praised God with a loud voice and fell on his face at the feet of Jesus, giving Him thanks.

This story brought me to tears as I tried to conceive how this man must have felt. Leprosy was a life sentence of physical pain and separation from loved ones. They couldn’t associate with or be around anyone else except those who also carried the disease. So, when the man realized the gift of healing that had been given to him, he couldn’t even continue down the road to the priest without first turning back to offer praise to God. Not only did he praise, but he did it loudly and fell on his face at Jesus’ feet. Jesus went on to ask him, “Were not ten cleansed? Where are the nine? Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?” (Luke 17:17-18) Only one out of the ten came back. I don’t know exactly how Jesus felt in this moment, but it’s obvious He was trying to understand why the others hadn’t returned to offer thanks in exchange for this gift of healing He had given them. Maybe the other nine lepers hadn’t quite realized they had been cleansed yet. The bible doesn’t give the reason, but it appears as though these others weren’t grateful for what they had been given. I’d like to think that if I had been given a new chance at life and redeemed from eternal separation that my reaction would be the same as this one man’s. And yet, the reality is, we have been given a new chance. The gift of salvation is our redemption from a life of separation from God. Sometimes it may take us a bit of time to become fully aware of what Christ did for us, possibly like the other nine who didn’t return. But, after we’ve walked out our salvation for a while, we begin to see ourselves for what we were and who we are now. This is when we realize that all of the dirt and all of the sin of our past was cleansed and washed away. We have become new; reconciled and reunited with the Father. Do we take the time to remember the magnitude of the gift that was given to us, like the one leper, and give thanks and praise to God? Or do we keep walking on, like the others, without even acknowledging it? Deep gratitude can only come from a heart that truly recognizes how much God has done, and it’s the ongoing recognition of the sacrifice He made that causes us to fall on our knees and continually give Him praise for this personal gift of salvation.

If you would like more information on how you can experience the gift of salvation and redemption from sin, please click on Resources and choose ‘How Can I Be Saved’.


11 On the way to Jerusalem he was passing along between Samaria and Galilee. 12 And as he entered a village, he was met by ten lepers, who stood at a distance 13 and lifted up their voices, saying, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us.” 14 When he saw them he said to them, “Go and show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went they were cleansed. 15 Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising God with a loud voice; 16 and he fell on his face at Jesus' feet, giving him thanks. Now he was a Samaritan. 17 Then Jesus answered, “Were not ten cleansed? Where are the nine? 18 Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?” 19 And he said to him, “Rise and go your way; your faith has made you well.”

18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!

Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving.


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