“We only learn to behave ourselves in the presence of God.” ~ C. S. Lewis
Beware of gratitude born of comparison. Aim higher in thanksgiving. Apart from extraordinary spiritual vigilance, I fall into the trap of thanking God for what I have in contrast to what I don’t have or what I am not experiencing at the moment. I am thankful for my health over against sickness, for comfort rather than suffering, for fortunate circumstance instead of life spiraling out of control. Thank You, God, that I’m not ….. Although tip-toeing the borders of being self-serving, subjective thanksgiving is not necessarily wrong or harmful, simply short-sighted. Objective gratitude, on the other hand, sees the present through the lens of eternity, and moves beyond recognizing momentary benefit to heralding enduring value. Penultimate thanksgiving ascribes worth to individuals we value. For example, I am thankful for my wife because she has a pure heart and embodies all the qualities I deem exemplary in a woman. Ultimate thanks giving turns heavenward, and has as its result, worship. True gratitude grants vocabulary to adoration. I am grateful to our all-knowing, all-powerful, all-loving Father because He is holy and perfect and just and gracious and righteous, and…. His mercy is endless and He loves me with a love indescribable, ruthless, unrelenting; therefore, I thank Him first for who He is, and then express holy appreciation for all He has done and continues to enact for His renown.