Guilty Thankfulness



I just obtained an item that I had been anticipating.  Once it arrived, it was above and beyond all that I could ask or think.

I have enjoyed it so much that I have almost been giddy with excitement.

Then Christian guilt stepped in.  I found myself thanking the Lord with an undercurrent of “… but…  I don’t deserve it…  but… I need to remain humble so that I won’t begin to think that I had anything to do with the blessing… but… many people haven’t been blessed like this and I can’t act happy or it would seem arrogant or make me appear ungrateful…”

Imagine you give someone a gift.  It costs quite a bit, but you love them so much that the love you have for them overtakes the price.  You just want to express how much you love them.  You have experienced joy in the giving.

Now imagine when you give that person the gift, they look down and say “oh no, I couldn’t possibly…” or “you really shouldn’t have…” Or worse, they say; “I don’t deserve it”.

It makes you feel ashamed that you have given such a gift.  Or hurt that they don’t view it as simply an act of love.

Christians know (or should know) that all good things come from the Heavenly Father.  How many times do you think He would love to bless us but can’t stomach another guilty prayer of thankfulness?

We never really deserve the Heavenly Father’s gifts.  It’s true.  We have done nothing to warrant His love for us except for being His children.  We did not deserve the gift of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross.  But that gift was given to us out of pure love.  We thank Him every day for that gift (I hope).  It should give us unspeakable joy!

So it occurred to me in my case to allow myself to be happy and joyful.  I look at His gift and a big smile comes over my face and I giggle and say “Thank you, Jesus!  I’m really enjoying my gift!”

And I don’t feel the least bit guilty for it.

One thought on “Guilty Thankfulness”

  1. Go offer a gift, some sacrificial gift, to someone most undeserving – someone who mostly likely will not be thankful, or less than appropriately thankful. To someone who elicits contempt. Then send that person away in YOUR grace praying God’s blessing on them. Then re-examine your self-esteem.

    You just took the role of God in a small, personal proph-O-drama. You are now LIKE God. Not in that forbidden-fruit-eating sense, but in that what-you-were-created-for sense.

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