But I with the voice of thanksgiving will sacrifice to you; what I have vowed I will pay. Salvation belongs to the LORD!” Jonah 2:9 ESV
On Monday, my son and daughter-in-love had their second child, a healthy little girl named Adelaide. At one point the hospital room was filled with family members. Later that week, Nana and Papa came for a visit. When we were leaving their home, Papa said, “I thank God everyday for how good He has been to all of my grandkids.” Hearing thankfulness spoken aloud makes an impression.
If you had a counter clicker with you all day, how many times would it be used to count the verbal expression from you own mouth of thankfulness? Can you remember the last conversation that you had with someone in which you were expressing thanks? Are you someone who feels thankful on the inside, but you have a hard time saying it aloud? Who do you know that is a regular at giving thanks? What is the difference between genuine thankfulness and just using the words?
Jonah gives a hint at the genesis of a thankful heart in the word sacrifice. In Hebrew it is pronounced ez·bə·ḥāh and it means to slaughter for sacrifice. The imagery is the whole process of taking an animal and preparing is for the sacrifice which would include killing it and draining the blood -sorry for the graphic illustration. Notice however, the activity of preparing the sacrifice. The sacrificer was fully engaged in the process. A sacrifice was an expression of willingness.
Voicing your thankfulness is your privilege to offer to others and to God. It has very little to do with your feelings, but it starts with the death of “entitlement” to make way for “appreciation”. Make a list of things to be thankful for. Begin to express those to God from you heart. Listen for thankful expressions at work or school. Look for opportunities to create a thankful atmosphere. It will start with you speaking thankfulness from you heart.
May you be the change in your environment that brings forth attitudes of gratitude.
Blessings Love Y’all