Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The Magic Word

(ethoughts ... this one ran Tuesday July 26)

“Enter his gates with thanksgiving.” -- Psalm 100:4 (NIV)

A freckle-faced boy I know picked up the phone and called his mom, only 20 feet away in another office.

“Hey mom! Whatcha doin’?” Smiling and sweet. Before she could even answer, he said, “I love you. OK!”

And he hung up. And I’m sure the call didn’t bother his mom, who would in a few minutes haul him and his big sister to Vacation Bible School.

I’ve just met him but I love that kid. He called his mom because it’s fun for him to talk to her. He knows she’ll be patient. And he knows she’ll get him where he needs to go. He seems genuinely overjoyed to be dependent on someone who thinks he hung the moon. His adoration and obedience and genuine joy expresses to his mom his gratitude, even though he might not yet know what gratitude means.

I read something this week in “A Call to Growth” by Billie Hanks Jr.: “God is watching with great interest to see how you will respond to the privilege of life.”

Does my Maker know how grateful I am, how overjoyed I am to be His? AM I grateful and overjoyed? Or does a sense of entitlement drown out what once was humble thanks for everything from my next breath to my salvation…

And this I read, too, from Romans 1: 21 (NIV): “For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.”

My heart gets dark because I forget to say, “Thanks”? I think so. I trade humble gratitude for self-reliance. Gradually, my default attitude is going to be one or the other.

I’d rather be more like my freckle-face friend, always anxious to pick up the phone, happy and grateful in whose child I am.