November 23, 2023


Timothy Birdnow

From the archives:

Perhaps the greatest vice in our modern world is ingratitude. Nobody is grateful for anything these days, thinking the world owes them. It infects our thinking at all levels, and is at the root of so many of our problems, be they political, social, economic, or what have you.

Just look at, say, the push to forgive college debt; that comes because a bunch of spoiled young people think they are entitled to free college and are ungrateful for the opportunity given them. But not to pick on young people; there are multiple other examples involving people of all ages.

We are ungrateful for the huge bounty of food we enjoy (something few generations have had). We are ungrateful for the benefits of electricity, or easy transportation, or instant communication. We see that as just the way the world is, but in reality these are miracles of modernity, gifts from God.

We are ungrateful for our spouses and families. Many younger people don't want to marry or raise children any longer. They see these great gifts as chores.

We are ungrateful for our system of government which used to allow us the freedom to chart our own destiny. Few countries have ever had that. It's why so many people seek to come to America.

We are ungrateful for our warm homes, our clothes, our clean water. We see all that as our due.

And most of all we are horribly ungrateful to our God. How many attend church services at all? How few realize the number of people who died to give us that right, and who died seeking it. Yet were are horribly ungrateful for the ability to thank the one who gave us this wonderful life we enjoy and believe we so richly deserve.

Ingratitude is at the heart of the rise of socialism, which is ingratitude enshrined as economic doctrine. It is the core of the angry Leftist movements like Black Lives Matter. It is the cornerstone of most anti-Americanism today.

We are a selfish, grasping, greedy, ungrateful lot. Most of us can be characterized by Dickens:

"A squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous old sinner!”

While we snicker at this description of Ebaneazer Scrooge, is it really all that different from many of our friends and neighbors in modern America?

Our modern Scrooges covet not gold but free internet and free college and free healthcare. They ask not for shillings but for unlimited wifi. It may be the vehicle of wealth is different but in the end the American public (and indeed the rest of the world) is not much different.

Liberalism/socialism is predicated on envy and covetousness. And to be envious and covetous one must be ungrateful for what one has.

So capitalists are greedy? Perhaps. But how does that excuse your being ungrateful to God and to your country? Does it make anything better for you or anyone? So politicians are corrupt. How does that change your blessings? How is it you can say you don't have anything to be thankful for? They will get theirs in due course; God is just. But you and I will get ours in due course too. We should want ours to be a reward and not a punishment for being ungrateful brats.

Which is what Western Civilization has become. God blessed us tremendously and we have rejected both Him and those blessings. Now we are actively trying to tear them down in some quixotic quest for "equity" which is code for stealing from others what we think is owed us.

Inflation is ingratitude. We are not grateful for our fair share, or for what we have earned. We want more so we print more money. That steals wealth from our children and grandchildren, but we get ours! A grateful people wouldn't do that.

When Jesus cured 12 people of leprosy (then a horrible scourge which led to utter ruin) only one returned to thank Him. Jesus remarked on this astounding ingratitude. But we are even worse now, choosing to reject not just the blessings of God but His very existence because it crimps our style. You can't steal from your neighbors tax dollars while being grateful. You can't abort babies. You can't indulge in deviant sexual behavior. Gratitude requires obedience to standards and norms.

So on this Thanksgiving Day let us ponder the monstrous ingratitude of our times, and furthermore think on the countless blessings we have had bestowed on us by our God. Our problems all stem from our failure to do precisely that. And our hope for the future lies not in political battles or in getting wealthy so much as in our willingness to thank the Almighty for the gifts He has bestowed on us and being willing to accept the gifts he offers without complaint.

At the end of A Christmas Carol Scrooge has to make a choice between being grateful for what he had and using those gifts or continuing to be ungrateful and hording them. His choice is stark; he will die and go to Hell if he doesn't repent. We must do likewise or suffer a similar fate.

Posted by: Timothy Birdnow at 09:37 AM | Comments (2) | Add Comment
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1 Well, what can one say? We are beset by Democrats whichever way we turn.

Posted by: Dana Mathewson at November 24, 2023 12:19 AM (wQ5RW)

2 Amen to THAT Dana! They are far and away the most ungrateful people around.

Posted by: Timothy Birdnow at November 24, 2023 08:34 AM (AZzSg)

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