We like to take this time of year here in the good ‘ol U S of A to give Thanks. For friends, family, things, whatever.
But what I’ve realized I am super guilty of is spending the rest of the year preoccupied with thanks-getting. Waiting for people to say, “Thank you.” all so I can shrug or wave it away and say, “No worries!”.
I do thank people a lot. I compliment others. I give to others. I will always share what I have.
But when someone doesn’t thank me, I trip on my pride, my feelings get hurt, and I call that person rude (or consider them to be ungrateful quietly to myself).
GOD doesn’t do that. Every day He makes things happen that I don’t say enough thanks for. Has childhood conditioning to wait for a thank you so ruined me?
We do the same thing with forgiveness, which is another thing we like to pretend to easily distribute during the holidays. Even though I find about the third week of November, good will towards men and women on the road, in the line, or behind the counter seems to evaporate.
We wait for a thank you if we take the path of forgiveness. We make it about US. If we “forgive” someone, we act like they owe us some sort of something. Maybe a grovel? An apology? A gilded quil-written letter begging for the forgiveness we already “gave”?
They don’t. It doesn’t even matter if they are sorry.
The Advent season is about the joyfully expectant attitude of awaiting the celebration of Christ’s birth. The secular tradition of Thanksgiving is the perfect beginning to a season of giving thanks and putting aside the attitude of waiting for thanks.
So this week when no one says, “Thank you” for whatever it was you did, use it as a reminder to be thankful for your own blessings instead of being grumpy about how your charity went unnoticed.