Have you ever heard the saying, “It is the small things that matter”? Well, I think the act of saying thank you certainly falls into this category. You might think saying thank you is a small and insignificant thing. You might even say in a complex and busy world, saying thank you slows you down and gets in the way, or that it is just a courteous way to interact with each other. However, Paul the Apostle does not see it that way. For Paul, the seemingly small act of saying “thank you” really does matter and is more important than you might think. Paul writes this in Romans Chapter 1.
21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.
Paul is saying that at the heart of human sin is the inability to say thank you to God. When you say thank you, you are recognising that you have been given something or that something has been done for you. My Year 7 Christian Education class likened the inability to say thank you to plagiarism because when you plagiarise, you are pretending something is yours when it belongs to someone else.
The Bible insists that everything we have is a gift from God. Our lives, our families, the world we live in, the things we own and the skills we possess, have all been given to us. This is certainly the case when we think about the forgiveness of our sins and our relationship with God. It is a true gift of grace given to us when Jesus died on our behalf on the cross. Our great danger is forgetting this and crediting all we have to ourselves.
The simple act of saying thank you to God reorientates our lives and recognises His position as our creator, sustainer and redeemer.