The Christian Connection
The Grateful Leper By Myra Smith
“Jesus asked, ‘Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?’ Then he said to him, ‘Rise and go; your faith has made you well.’” (Luke 17:17)
The story begins like this: Jesus was entering Jerusalem. He has been teaching and instructing both the crowd and his disciples about the kingdom of God, faith, and sin. As he enters town, ten lepers loudly call out to him, “Jesus, Master, have pity on us!” Jesus hears them and tells them to go show themselves to the priests. When they do, they are healed! We don’t know what happened to nine of the men. I would assume they felt of their new skin, free of loathsome sores, and went on their merry way. Only one man returned to Jesus, threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him. This man was a Samaritan, considered inferior by the Jews.
We are entering the season of Thanksgiving. For most of us, it means eating a lot and spending time with family. But for this man who had been ill, isolated, shunned, demeaned, and loathed his entire life, Thanksgiving Day was the day he met Jesus and was healed. How often do we thank Jesus for our many blessings? When we are sick, lonely, hurt, and needy, we call out to Jesus to save and heal us. But, as soon as our lives are better, we forget to thank God.
This Thanksgiving, and every day, remember to thank the One who loves, listens, helps, heals, and forgives.
There were ten who were healed, but only one returned to say “thank you” to Jesus. And what did Jesus say to the grateful man? “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.”
Happy Thanksgiving. May we all be made well by our gratefulness.