Like Oprah’s audience …
All of us, in just about any condition in life — from the worst and most difficult to the most abundant — can come up with something, if not many things, to say on Thanksgiving Day that we’re grateful for. That might get you through the, “Let’s have everyone share what they’re thankful for” portion around the holiday dinner table, but it really doesn’t represent a person with an attitude, a heart, of thanksgiving.
That’s much more like being a member of Oprah’s audience. Sure, they’re thrilled going to the show to see her, but they really go hoping to be one of her many audiences who come away with an armful of gifts. Or maybe a big ‘ol flat screen. Or maybe you’ll be one of those audiences where she gives everyone a brand new car!
Oprah fans might be smiling if all they get is a chance to be in the presence of their favorite entertainer, but they’re secretly hoping for more, and if truth is to be told, they’d come away disappointed if all they got was Oprah.
How much like Oprah fans are many who gather around dinner tables on Thanksgiving. Sure, we’re grateful for our families, and our health, and the fact we’re employed. We’re grateful for a roof over our heads and food to eat every day. But if truth was to be told, we really want more …
… we’d rather be in that “Black Friday” line to get the cheap big screen TV, just imagine how much better football would be with that!
… we’d rather be making more money …
… we’d rather have a bigger house …
… for too many us, in the back of our minds, and entertained in our hearts, is a desire for more.
The presence of Christ in us isn’t enough.
We become so accustomed to just how lavishly blessed we are that in short order we make being blessed commonplace and desire more.
Back in 1988, a Polish railway worker named Jan Grzebski was hit by a train. He survived, but barely. For the next 19 years, Grzebski was in a coma. He awoke in 2007 to a whole new world. Nineteen years earlier, Poland was a communist state. Grzebski noted that back then meat was rationed and there were huge lines at gas stations. And, “there was only tea and vinegar in the shops.”
But 19 years later, he awoke to a free nation where he said there were “people on the streets with cell phones and there were so many goods in the shops it makes my head spin!”
But something puzzled him.
“What amazes me is all these people who walk around with their mobile phones and yet they never stop moaning.”
These people now had freedom, and food, and wealth greater than Poland had had for decades, and yet Grzebski noted that all the people seemed to do was to grumble about what they didn’t have.
They wanted more.
We usually make Thanksgiving Day about pulling up that list in our minds of things we know we can say we’re “thankful” for. What if we made it about examining ourselves to see if we are, simply, a grateful person? Not someone who lives with a longing for more, but someone who is grateful … period.
The kind of person where Christ is enough.
The kind of person who doesn’t entertain a head and heart full of desires for all kinds of things we don’t yet have but secretly want.
But the kind of person who is satisfied with Christ and finding in Him a genuine sufficiency.
Will that be you on Thanksgiving Day?