The scripture readings today bring to mind the importance of giving thanks to God. In the first reading from 2Kings 5:14-17, Naaman, who had leprosy, was told by the prophet Elisha to go and plunge in the Jordan River seven times. Naaman was perplexed by this command thinking that there are better ways to be healed rather than plunging into a dirty old river. But when he finally did, he was completely cured of his leprosy. He went back to Elisha to present him with gifts but Elisha refused. Why? Because this healing was not caused by Elisha, but all thanksgiving, glory and praise goes to God.
Leprosy and thanksgiving continues in the Gospel reading from Luke 17:11-19. There were ten lepers who wanted to be cured. Jesus tells them to go and show themselves to the priest. They go and on the way, they all are completely cured of their leprosy. One of the former lepers, a Samaritan, returns to give thanks to Jesus. I am sure the other nine were also grateful but as our priest, Fr. Joseph, suggested in the homily, they did not know who to give thanks to.
The message for me today is that God is to be given thanks, glory and praise for every gift and blessing. We thank people daily in our lives for helping us in some way, which is good, but ultimately, the thanksgiving belongs to God. I thank many for the great blog posts I read, which is good, but ultimately, the glory goes to God through the power of the Holy Spirit. And when I am thanked for doing something good for someone, I hope I can be more like the prophet Elisha and give thanksgiving to whom it truly belongs. Glory be to the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen.