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The Desert of Ingratitude

Remember how Eve was lured by the desire for “MORE!” in Genesis 3?

Where did that start?

I think the starting place is familiar to all of us. It’s in the desert place of ingratitude.

Ingratitude really is a desert place—it sucks all joy out of life because ingratitude is blind to the good gifts of the Father.

[box]God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” Then God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the surface of all the earth, and every tree which has fruit yielding seed; it shall be food for you .  .  . (Genesis 1:27–29)[/box]

Eve had paradise but wanted “MORE!” God gave her every tree, only withholding one:

[box]From any tree of the garden you may eat freely; but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die. (Genesis 2:16–17)[/box]

But Eve wanted “MORE!”

She experienced all the good things God provided but wanted “MORE!”

Eve’s ingratitude took her from the lush gardens of peaceful contentment and drove her into the wilderness of desolate places.

Always seeking.

Painful longing.

Insatiable hunger.

Empty dreams.

The only answer when you realize you’re wandering in the desert of ingratitude is to make an altar of gratitude. Ingratitude and the craving for “More!” is demolished by gratitude. When I’m thankful for His every gift, ingratitude and evil craving is swallowed in the wake of thanksgiving.

[box]Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow. (James 1:17)[/box]

[box]Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. (1 Thessalonians 5:18).[/box]

How about conquering ingratitude today by giving thanks?

What are you thankful for?

(From the archives) 

8 Comments

  • Nicole Vidal

    Today’s posting is so timely! This morning after breakfast my husband and I went to the couch to cuddle for a moment before getting ready for the day. The Holy Spirit gets credit for this one…I asked my husband if we could pray…our prayer was really just a time of thanking God for the things he has given us…work to meet our expenses, an unexpected check this past Friday, a pregnancy that seems to be going in the right direction despite two previous miscarriages, warm home, clean sheets, a car that is running well, food in our cupboard, and family and friends that love and care about us.
    Then with a quick peek at my email I came across today’s blog!
    My previous Bible Study leader Marian would encourage her ladies to have an “attitude of gratitude”.
    A goal of mine in 2014 is to read through Nancy Leigh Demoss’ book “Choosing Gratitude Your Journey to Joy”.
    Here are some favorite lyrics from a song:

    “Give thanks with a grateful heart
    Give thanks to the Holy One
    Give thanks because He’s given Jesus Christ, His Son

    Give thanks with a grateful heart
    Give thanks to the Holy One
    Give thanks because He’s given Jesus Christ, His Son

    And now let the weak say, “I am strong”
    Let the poor say, “I am rich
    Because of what the Lord has done for us”

    And now let the weak say, “I am strong”
    Let the poor say, “I am rich
    Because of what the Lord has done for us”

    -Nicole

  • Kimberly Wagner

    Hello Nicole ~

    Thank you so much for sharing a little of your morning and what God is doing in your heart! I loved getting that sneak peak into your life. You’ll love Nancy’s book on Gratitude. Be sure to check out the section in the back that has some good study questions that go along with each chapter, too. I hope you’ll share with us how God uses the study in 2014!

    Blessings, friend ~

  • Darcie

    I have found that gratitude is a great weapon against spiritual amnesia and keeps you in a place where you keep your focus vertically. The writers of some of the Psalms talk about a “sacrifice of praise”. In the midst of trials and storms, praising God for who He is, and not what you can get from Him, can bring a song to your heart, and help you to not idolize your situation and/or circumstances.
    Romans 1:21 states,”because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.” Over and over, God reveals in Scripture how ingratitude leads to self centeredness, idolatry, separation from God.
    Songs like what Nicole shared always usher me into that place of gratitude. When I am beat down physically, mentally, spiritually, I am thankful for Psalm 103. The words humble me, and the more I meditate, the more the exodus that Christ provided through the cross and His intercessions today at the right hand of the Father become more real.
    I dont know if this is true for anyone else, but also I find that the more I pray, and cultivate a relationship with God in His different roles of the Trinity, the more the gratitutude just overflows. There are times, just the awareness of His Presence brings forth thanksgiving that I cant put into words.

  • Vivian Etherington

    I recently found myself in a place of real struggle over our busy schedule and I had a complaining spirit! The Lord convicted me about that and I realized that it was a matter of my focus! He reminded me of my Precept study in the book of Philippians a couple of years ago: the theme of that book is Joy in Christ(despite circumstances)! My focus must be on Jesus, the Gospel, His redemption of me…..gratitude for Him and what He has done/ is doing for me. This week has been a whole lot better even though we have something every weeknight–not at all ideal for the family, but involves almost all of us! I am praying to live with grace and peace in the midst of a chaotic schedule that I cannot do anything about ( unless we did not allow our girls to play basketball)— not an option at this point. Why would I think having 6 kids, almost all of them teenagers now, would mean a calm, peaceful life

  • Vivian Etherington

    The last part of my comment was left off….so here it is:

    I HAVE “10,000 Reasons” TO BLESS THE LORD!

  • Kimberly Wagner

    Yes, Darcie!

    I totally agree. I love your description of gratitude as a weapon to fight spiritual amnesia. And Psalm 103 is one that I revisit often for a perspective adjustment!

    Because of what you said about cultivating a relationship with God in His different roles in the Trinity, I’m wondering whether you’ve read Michael Reeves’ book, “Delighting in the Trinity.” It is one of my favorites. I hope you’ll check it out if you haven’t read it.

    Thanks for stopping by to share some great thoughts!

  • Kimberly Wagner

    Good to hear from you, Viv ~

    I agree . . . 10,000 + reasons to bless the Lord!!!

    Praying you and your family have a precious Thanksgiving week ~