Be Grateful by Pam Newberry

Whenever I would read the story of the ten lepers in Luke 17, I would say, “Really we’re all lepers.”

I think that’s the first step toward being grateful.

The realization and receiving of what Jesus has done for us brings about a change within us.

It says in Luke 17 that of the ten lepers, only one returned to give thanks to Jesus. Then Jesus asked, “Where are the other nine?” 

I can feel in my heart the ache in His—not for His sake alone, but for the sake of what He knew the others relinquished.

To the leper who returned, Jesus said his faith “brought him salvation and healing.”

The miracles of Jesus are representations of a deeper reality in the Kingdom of God—”the blind see, the deaf hear, the dead are raised”—but these are not intended only as acts of physical healing, but as acts of spiritual healing. The leper who returned received not only physical healing, but “salvation.” In that man there was a realization of what Jesus had done for him that went all the way to his heart, soul, mind and spirit. It saved him. It was the “pearl of great price.” 

Though I was raised in the church, that healing happened for me only after I returned to church after a long absence. I had begun to date this wild and adventurous, bold and brazen man’s man—a man “who bowed to no one” I thought. Only, actually, he did.  I soon discovered that he went to church every Sunday. I was shocked. I was curious. I was compelled to go with him. It took great courage because I had been deeply hurt in church and I feared it would happen again, but iIt was there, in this new church, where love resided, that I learned about Jesus’ love and sacrifice for me. It was there, where I realized I was a leper who needed healing. Then one day, at home, I laid face down in surrender and truly received the salvation Jesus offered through His sacrifice on the cross.

I am so grateful “that God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. “ as it says in John 3;16. .” I am so grateful for that man who took me to a church where love was real so I could heal and learn not religion, but relationship. I know I have received physical healing from God, but more so, I have received the continuous internal healing of heart, soul, mind and spirit that my relationship with Jesus brings—an ever-flowing spring of the fountain of life. 

Does the story of the ten lepers have meaning for me? It sure does, and I am so grateful.

It is out of this mind, heart, soul, and spirit healing and love that I have been completely changed and it compels me to return to Him, my Great God, because He has made me grateful. This relationship is completely transformational, gratefulness pours from me without thought or action, it’s just who I am because of who He is. 

As an exercise, spend some time writing God a note/letter/prayer about what you are grateful for. Here’s a look at mine from the morning after He shared this devotion on being grateful with me.

Dear Lord,

As I was slipping into despair, You rescued me because You delighted in me. You lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire, and gave me a firm place to stand—on Your promises, on Your sure foundation, on the Rock that You are. 

I am so grateful.

As my hope was sinking, You reminded me of those precious verses in Isaiah 40:28-31, and I trusted in and believed them. I wet them with my tears, which you caught in a bottle. I am so grateful for Your powerful word that is living and active and sharper than a double-edged sword that cuts between bone and marrow.

I am so grateful.

When I awake in the night, You are there, for You never slumber nor sleep. You are always with me, never leaving me nor forsaking me. You are the 24/7 GOOD news.

I am so grateful.

So quickly You can restore my soul, which was downcast.

 I am so grateful.

You are my Light and my Salvation, my Help in time of need. 

For You, Lord, I am so grateful.

(Verse references. Song: Lifter)

Pam Newberry

I was born and raised in Galveston, and have lived most of my life in the Bay Area. I have been blessed to be part of a loving family/extended family all my life, which continues to this day. Through thick and thin we have been there for each other. I am an ambivert who loves and needs time alone and also loves and needs gathering in community. After teaching for 7 years, I met and married the love of my life, Roy Newberry, Sr. Meeting Roy came with a vibrant and renewed relationship with God, 4 adult stepchildren, grandchildren and eventually great-grands. I skipped the mom stage entirely and went straight to the fun of being Grandma, Grams and now G.G. My life has been an incredible adventure of all the things interwoven that make a life a life. I am now navigating widowhood and what’s next for me WITH God.

  1. What you’re reading right now?
    Reviewing material from a fabulous retreat sponsored by Ransomed Heart (now Wild at Heart) that Alan Arnold conducted in 2017 about living life WITH God as His daughter.
  2. What you’re loving right now?
    Experiencing my granddaughter hungering after God and getting to walk with her on that journey—pure JOY!
  3. What you’re watching right now?
    The Chosen on YouTube—gospel account—so good!!!
  4. What attribute of God’s character you’re experiencing most right now? His mystery