Friday, November 23, 2012

To Live a Thank You: Five Minute Fridays

It's Friday!
That means I've listened for the word that Lisa-Jo calls out and I'm writing, unedited and unbridled, for five minutes straight about that word.

Today's word is



I never had problems saying "thank you" as a child. My father and stepmother tell me now, as I call them and groan about the sense of entitlement and ingratitude in today's generation (particularly under my roof), that I probably said "thank you" a little too much. Can one do that?

I guess if it is born out of guilt. And I guess I felt guilty for getting things. Why? Did I not think I deserved them?

Was it about wanting approval and saying the "right thing?"

"Thank you" makes adults happy. It makes parents beam and say to themselves, "how nice my children look to others."

And when they don't say "thank you," parents might think, "how awful; I'm so embarrassed."

Has "thank you" become a measurement of how good we are as parents?

What if "thank you" became, to our kids, a measurement of how good we were doing as role models?


Husband and I are on the kids a lot about saying their "please" and "thank you"s.

And we try to say our "thank you"s as well. But how do we live the "thank you?"

Wouldn't that be...gratitude?

Oh, how circular it is. "You're welcome" is gratitude modeled to those who need to know what "thank you" looks like.

And my sometimes-ungrateful, entitled kids? If I model grace instead of react with sighed anger when they don't say "thank you," wouldn't grace feel better...and teach better? Wouldn't my consistent modeling of gratitude, even in the midst of ingratitude be the way to go?

I know I get so angry at the kids for being ungrateful because I am ashamed of my own ingratitude.

And so it is a circle.


Smiling as this Friday's word is so fitting both because of Thanksgiving, but also because of what I received in the mail today:

One Thousand Gifts Devotional by Ann Voskamp


  1. I like this . . . 'But how do we live the "thank you?" Wouldn't that be...gratitude?'
    Good thoughts. I have mulled these over myself. Thank you for sharing.

    1. Thank you for reading, Rebekah! I peeked over at your blog and was so taken in. I look forward to reading more.

  2. Thank you for sharing your heart and thoughts! Such an encouragement to know I am not the only parent who tries to keep my son saying thank you!

    1. Oh Ranae, I know we are not the only ones wanting more gratitude out of our kids! Susie Larson's book, "Growing Grateful Kids" is a very good one. It does all come down to, I believe, how grateful do we show our kids that we are? That's a hard one for me. I'm awesome at being grateful in my quiet moments with God...but when it comes to returning home to chaos, I find it hard to show my gratitude.

  3. WOW, this makes one think and I am convinced that we can easily contribute that characteristic to our Heavenly Pappa as well. If His love was deppendant on our thank you's, we would be in big trouble!!! I am so grateful that He loves us because that is His nature, and not because go something I can offer Him.

    1. Mia, you bet we'd be in trouble if God's love for us depended on us saying our thank-yous at the appropriate time and in the appropriate manner. I'm so grateful for grace!

  4. What a complete thought composed in that tight time frame.

    The other day someone said "thank you" to me for something, and I found myself responding as people at Chick-Fil-A are trained to respond: "My pleasure!"

    It got me thinking later...if we could hear God's verbal response when we say "thank You" to Him, what would He say back? Would it be more like "you're welcome" or "My pleasure"?

    1. Ann, I don't pretend to know what God would say, but I can possibly guess. Something in me says that He would say, "Well of course, it is yours, a gift from Me."
      Interesting thought you bring up. "My pleasure" also sounds like something our loving God would say and I know He delights in our gratitude, for that is something Jesus modeled so beautifully. And it does please God to create the blessings He gives us, right? So I suppose Him saying, "my pleasure" is fitting as well. A very nice thing to ponder today; thank you! :)


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