Read Psalm 116:1-2, 12-19

During a workshop on prayer, I gave the participants an exercise on thanksgiving.  They were to make a list of everything they were thankful for on one of the worst days of their lives.  After ten minutes I asked the participants to share this experience of offering a sacrifice of thanksgiving.  A woman in the back of the room continued to write as the sharing began.  Finally, with a catch in her throat, she commented on her experience.  “My young adult son died three months ago of cancer.  It was a terrible time for us, but I realize through this exercise how much I had to be thankful for.  A nurse who was so kind.  Friends who stood with us.  My son’s freedom from a body of pain into eternal life.  I wrote three pages and I could still write more!”  She had found the hand of God through her sacrifice of thanksgiving.

St. Ignatius taught that the greatest sin is ingratitude.  Ingratitude shuts down our connection with God.  But when we give a sacrifice of thanksgiving, especially during painful times, God’s love can pour into us and give us what we truly need to become: “more than conquerors.”

Lord Jesus, forgive our sin of ingratitude.

Show us how to give a sacrifice of thanksgiving every day of our lives.

Janet Hellner-Burris

Christian Church of Wilkinsburg, Pittsburgh, PA