We brag because we feel we are being overlooked. We brag because we want recognition when we feel we haven’t gotten it. The great opera singer, the all-star quarterback, the award-winning author; these people have no need to brag. They have been recognized. But most of us do feel that urge sometimes. “Why haven’t I been noticed,” we wonder. For those of us who feel that way, this is our Psalm. While we Presbyterians are very good at the corporate confession of sin, we are poor braggers. We hide our accomplishments and magnify our failures. It is in our DNA.
As we enter the Thanksgiving week, I hope we can see in the text of Psalm 26 that there is a relationship between gratitude and obedience, between thanksgiving and fidelity. If we are grateful then there should be natural consequences in our lives of those feelings. That consequence should be obedience to that for which we are thankful. Do you see? Gratitude without reciprocity rings hollow; it is empty calories. This Thanksgiving, be grateful! Let gratitude lead to a desire to cleave ever closer to the God who is the source of all blessings. And then as we embrace that fidelity, don’t forget it is ok to brag about it.
Prayer: Holy God, thank you for the many blessings we have received. Thank you for family, friends, and faith. Thank you for your Church, and for the people we meet within it. Thank you for shaping us with your Spirit. Thank you for sending Christ into this world. This week, help us to be obedient to his calling in our lives and strengthen us for the work which lies ahead. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.