It’s terribly easy to get caught up in our own ‘bubbles’ that we live in and believe that every item or relationship or situation we have is our own doing. But really, what do any of us have that God hasn’t given to us? To further contemplate this and say that ALL that we each have is from God, why do we act as though we’re so great, as though we’ve accomplished something on our own?
“For what gives you the right to make such a judgement? What do you have that God hasn’t given you? And if everything you have is from God, why boast as though it were not a gift?” — 1 Corinthians 4:7
Either in life’s successes or its struggles, we hope our natural fall back is to trust in God’s goodness. However, we often forget that. What happens when we forget the goodness of God?
When we forget God’s goodness, we start claiming credit for the things God has done.
Jesus tells a story of a rich man in Luke 12, who had been very successful but didn’t give God any of the credit. This man thought he built his wealth all by himself. God says to him…
“You fool. Tonight, you’re going to die, and I’m going to give everything you’ve amassed to somebody else who will appreciate it and express their gratitude to me.”
What a somber warning!
Prideful ingratitude is the sin that got Satan kicked out of heaven, and it’s the source of all our sins. When we cease being grateful to God is when we get into trouble: in Romans 1:21 it says…
“For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile, and their foolish hearts were darkened.”
The problem with the self-made person is that they worship their maker (themselves). They may think…
I built this business with my own bare hands! But who gave you those surgical hands?
I thought up the business plan totally on my own. But who gave you your intellect and acumen?
I worked for what I got today by the sweat of my brow. But who gave you the ability to work so hard?
Everything we have in life—the ability to see, the ability to hear, the ability to eat, our freedoms, our thoughts—we owe to God. Everything is a gift. None of us would take our next breath if it weren’t for the goodness of God. We wouldn’t exist if God hadn’t made each of us to love Him and to love one another.
Ingratitude is one of the roots of atheism. When an individual is ungrateful, they start dismissing or even denying what God has done. And that’s just a short distance from denying that God even exists in the first place.
The truth is we don’t have to know a lot of the Bible to know a lot about God. All we have to do is simply walk outdoors. Romans 1:20 says…
“For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature. So, they have no excuse for not knowing God.”
The next time you find yourself starting to doubt the goodness of God, take a step outside, walk, run, or hike out the door and look around! It might help you remember that everything you have is from God.