“What do you have that God hasn’t given you? And if all you have is from God, why act as though you are so great, and as though you have accomplished something on your own?”
1 Corinthians 4:7 (TLB)
We’ve talked about how trusting in God’s goodness helps you face life’s struggles.
But what happens when you start thinking you earned the good things in your life, forgetting goodness comes from God?
In Luke 12, Jesus tells the story of a rich man who was very successful but didn’t give God any of the credit for his prosperity. And so God tells the rich man, “You fool! You will die this very night. Then who will get everything you worked for?” Jesus finishes the story by saying, “Yes, a person is a fool to store up earthly wealth but not have a rich relationship with God” (Luke 12:20-21 NLT).
Prideful ingratitude is the sin that got Satan kicked out of heaven, and it’s the source of all sins. When you stop being grateful to God, you get into trouble: “Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn’t worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused” (Romans 1:21 NLT).
The problem with some self-made people is that they end up worshipping themselves. They may think, “Wait a minute; I built this business with my bare hands.” But who gave you your hands? They say, “I thought up the business plan totally by myself.” But who gave you your mind? They claim, “I worked for where I am today by the sweat of my brow.” But who gave you the ability to work so hard?
Everything you have in life—the ability to see, hear, and eat, your freedom and thoughts—you owe to God. You would not take your next breath if it weren’t for the goodness of God.
Ingratitude is one of the roots of atheism too; when you’re ungrateful, you start dismissing or even denying what God has done. And that’s just a short step from denying that God even exists.
Yet the truth is you can see the presence of God everywhere you look: “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” (Romans 1:20 NLT).
If you start to doubt God’s goodness, just take a step outside your door and look around. You can see God’s goodness throughout his creation!
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