Nov 14 (Lk 17:11-19)

Shopping malls and Super markets have gained a lot of popularity over the last few years.

One of the attractions in most of these places is the decorative tag-board displaying the word: “FREE”!

>> Buy one shirt, get one FREE…

>> Pick up two items of your choice, and get a gift hamper FREE…

>> Choose any one item in the following, and receive a kitchen set absolutely FREE…

People flock where there are FREE things to be offered.

Sometimes, even in our religion and our spirituality, we look for such FREE offers!

Though, there’s nothing wrong in this concept of FREE offers…

… in the spiritual realm, such FREE gifts also places a demand on the receivers to have a spirit of gratefulness and gratitude.

Every FREE gift in the spiritual world, is a call to cultivate greater, the spirit of Thankfulness!

The Gospel of the Day is a reminder to grow in this dimension of appreciating & acknowledging the great FREE gifts of God in our lives.

The story of the Healing of the Ten Lepers is a very familiar and popular incident.

In the Biblical days, leprosy, was one of the most dreaded diseases.

>> Leprosy finds its mention in the Bible in over 40 places.

One of the reason why leprosy is talked about so much in the Bible is that it is a graphic illustration of sin’s destructive power.

>> Incurable by man, many believed that God inflicted the curse of leprosy upon people for the sins they committed.

Leprosy became a disease that was so despised and loathed that those afflicted were not allowed to live in any community with their own people (Numbers 5:2).

A leper wasn’t allowed to come within six feet of any other human, including his own family.

>> The disease was considered so revolting that the leper wasn’t permitted to come within 150 feet of anyone, when the wind was blowing.

Lepers lived in a community with other lepers until they either got better or died.

>> This was the only way the people knew to contain the spread of the contagious forms of this dreaded sickness.

When the Lord travelled through the region of Samaria and Galilee, He encountered the group of ten lepers.

>> In churches, we’ve seen lovely choirs of men & women, who raise their voices to the heavens, with their beautiful & melodious voices.

>> At Christmas, the splendid choir of angels, raised their voice , to announce to the world, of the Birth of the Glorious Saviour of Humanity.

But here is another choir…A dreadful-appearing choir….Of Ten Lepers…

Their patches of skin were discoloured…

… with pink or white shades appearing on their brow, nose, ear, cheeks or chin….

… with spongy tumourous appearances on various parts of the body…

… and deformed hands and feet!

An unsightly and ugly choir….singing their melodious chorus in loud exaltation, “Jesus, Master! Have pity on us!” (Lk 17:13)

The chorus reached the ears of the Divine Choir-Master, Jesus!

>> Their pitiful cry…their hopeless wail…their pleading voice, echoed in the ears of the Divine Healer!

“Go, show yourselves to the Priest” (Lk 17: 14) were the words of the Divine Lord.

Lev 14:1-9 states that the priest must authenticate any cure from leprosy.

>> This was to allow the afflicted person to re-enter the society.

But as the lepers are on their way to show to the priest, they are cured!

>> Miracles occur, when one chooses to put one’s trust in God!

>> Wonders happen, when one obeys the words of the Lord, in faith and hope!

But one of them realizes that He had been healed.

And so he returned and glorified God in a loud voice and fell at the feet of Jesus and thanked Him (Lk 17: 15)

Here is a big lesson for us all…

> All the ten lepers sought for a FREE blessing from the Lord.

> All the ten lepers expected a FREE miracle from the Healer.

>> Jesus, in His graciousness, did bless all of them with a FREE miracle.

>> Jesus, in His compassion, did shower all of them with a FREE blessing.

But just one among them, acknowledged the worth and value of that FREE gift

>> The rest of the nine, probably completely forgot the source of that FREE blessing.

Every FREE gift in the spiritual world, is a call to cultivate greater, the spirit of Thankfulness!

But perhaps, this is a reality that we very often forget in our lives.

We take for granted the many many FREE gifts and blessings that are showered upon us.

Like the FREE offers, available at shopping malls and super markets, we gladly receive God’s blessings…

… but unfortunately, often, fail to acknowledge them and be grateful for it.

The one who returned back to thank the Lord, received not just physical healing, but also was doubly blessed with the gift of being saved!

The Lord showers His FREE gifts on us…

>> Do I return back to thank God for His marvelous blessings?

>> Do I reduce my life to being a clatter of complaints or do I adorn my life with a litany of praises and thanksgiving?

>> Do I take all my blessings for granted and merely groan about my duties?

We love to flock where there are FREE things.

>> We also love to receive the FREE blessings from God.

But, in this process, let’s not fail to also acknowledge and thank Him for His FREE offers.

Ten people were healed that day, but only one came back to give thanks.

> The one who returned to give thanks chose not to forget what Jesus had done for him.

Are we living as this grateful one or as the other nine?

Praise is a choice.

> A thankful heart is a choice.

None is forced.

>> None is compelled.

The secret of a thankful heart is a conscious choice not to forget what God has done for us.

>> Shall we also possess this Secret?

(Psst…once again…this too is a FREE offer…. )

God Bless! Live Jesus!

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