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Giving thanks starts with God

From the November 2012 issue of The Christian Science Journal

This article was originally published as a Teachers Talk blog on JSH-Online.

I was at a recent Wednesday evening testimony meeting at my Christian Science branch church, listening to the gospel narrative of Jesus’ healing the ten lepers (see Luke 17:12–19). A corresponding citation from Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy was also read. It says, “Of the ten lepers whom Jesus healed, but one returned to give God thanks,—that is, to acknowledge the divine Principle which had healed him” (p. 94).

I realized, for the first time, that this is talking about specifically giving thanks to God—not just giving thanks. That didn’t mean the other nine people weren’t thankful. They were probably elated to be rid of a deforming, painful disease. That must have made them very happy. But their lack of gratitude to God left the healing, in their minds, as a mere human cure.

Only by bringing God into the picture do we recognize that healing is actually spiritual, is of God. As a poem in the Christian Science Hymnal says, “Only God can bring us gladness, / Only God can give us peace” (No. 263). If gladness and peace come only from God, then our gratitude should always start with God.

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