Scripture: Matthew 25: 31 – 46
31 ‘When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on the throne of his glory. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, 33 and he will put the sheep at his right hand and the goats at the left.
34 Then the king will say to those at his right hand, “Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; 35 for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36 I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.”
37 Then the righteous will answer him, “Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? 38 And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? 39 And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?”
40 And the king will answer them, “Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family,[a] you did it to me.” 41 Then he will say to those at his left hand, “You that are accursed, depart from me into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels; 42 for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.”
44 Then they also will answer, “Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?” 45 Then he will answer them, “Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.” 46 And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.’
When someone does something nice for you, what do you do? You say, “Thank you,” don’t you?
Sometimes that just doesn’t seem to be enough.
Has someone ever done something for you that was so nice that you wanted to do more than just say, “Thank You”?
I have. When that happens, I sometimes send them a “Thank You” card.
Everyone enjoys receiving a “Thank You” card. Think about a time you sent a card or note like this.
Another way you can show your thanks when someone does something really nice for you is by doing something nice for them in return. So if someone invites you to come for tea and you have a really good time, you return their kindness by inviting them to come for tea with you. It’s always important to show we’re thankful when someone does something for us.
I don’t know anyone who has done more for us than God has. God provides food when we’re hungry and water when we’re thirsty. He heals us when we’re sick and He comforts us when we’re sad. The Bible tells us that He is an ever-present helper in times of trouble. Take a moment now to write or draw something you’re thankful to God for.
Because of all God has done for us, we say, “Thank you.” But He’s done so much!
I have an idea to do even more to thank God.
Jesus told us how to do it. Jesus said, “Whatever you do for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you do it for me.”
That means when we feed someone who is hungry, it is the same as doing it for Jesus. When we visit someone who is sick, it is the same as doing it for Jesus.
When we give clothes to those who are in need, it is the same as doing it for Jesus.
There is a very special name for this way of saying “Thank you.” I call it “Thanks Living.” “Thanks Living” is when we show our thanks by the way we Live. “Thanks Living” is when we look at the many ways God has blessed us, and we thank Him by sharing His blessings with others. Can you think of a way you can show your Thanks Living to God this week?
Let’s pray and ask God to help us offer our thanksgiving by “thanks living.”
Dear God, we come into Your presence with thanksgiving.
Help us turn our thanksgiving into “thanks living.”
Help us notice people around us who are in need and ways we can care for them like You care for us.
In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Make a Thank You card for someone special – tell them why you want to thank them and what they mean to you.
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