Sunday, September 9, 2012

Day 248, September 9

I recently read the book THANKS by Robert A. Emmns in which he presented carefully researched studies about gratitude and ingratitude.  In this excellently written book, the author outlined some pitfalls to gratitiude.  One such pitfall was expecting gratitude from others.

"Act with kindness, but do not expect gratitude."  Confucious

I am guilty of this pitfall.  So, I supsect, are others.  It is natural, indeed, human to want to receive gratitude for a kindness extended, a gift presented.  The trouble is, when that gratitude fails to materialize, as is frequently the case, we are left feeling cheated.  At least I am.  After all, did I not go out of my way for another, did I not share of my means?

Does this mean we should not help someone else?  Absolutely not.  To do so would be to deny that part of us which is divine, that part which strives to emulate the Father.  What it does suggest is that we re-examine our motives for offering help.  Do we do it out of a desire to serve or do we do it out of a need for gratitude? 

This I know for sure:  the desire to help another, to lift another, is worthy and noble and should not be tied with strings.


  1. It should not, but in my case I have to confess that those strings are often there. I recently was feeling very put-upon by all the things being asked of me, seemingly without the askers having any idea how difficult it was for me to accomplish "just this one more thing" that was "easy". I was snapped back into line by a loving Father who reminded me that I have been richly blessed with so much. After all, I wasn't really giving of myself. The gifts came from my Father, so I was really sharing of Him. The gratitude rightly belongs to Him.

  2. What perfect timing! I'm dealing with what feels like another case of ingratitude, and I needed the reminder that while I cannot change anyone else, I can change myself and my expectations. Thank you!