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One of Shakespeare’s characters pronounced a curse upon his enemy by wishing him to know “how sharper than a serpent’s tooth to have a thankless child.”  Not many things in life are more bitter than to give sacrificially to an ingrate.  Matthew Henry said many times in his commentary, “Call a man an ingrate, and you can call him no worse.”

Here’s a happy parent:  He gives his kid a new widget, and the kid says thanks, and means it, and goes and gets visibly happy with the gadget.  What does the parent get out of it?  He gets the kid’s joy and experiences it as his own.  That’s what a giving, sacrificial sort of love does.

God gives his creatures such experiences so that we can see what genuine thankfulness from us looks like from his end.  It’s sweet and pleasant and a joy to giver and receiver.

The thankless child reckons his parents as his debtors, issues his demands, takes what he wants, expresses no gratitude.  A parent’s love never quite goes out, but every day in the presence of an ingrate is like dying all over again.

Paul says we should abound in thanksgiving.  (Col 2:7) Yes and amen, Bro. Paul.  What do we have that we have not received?  And if we received it, what harm is there in cheerfully acknowledging the giver?

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