As Jesus continued his journey to Jerusalem, he traveled through Samaria and Galilee. As he was entering a village, ten lepers met him. They stood at a distance from him and raised their voices, saying, “Jesus, Master! Have pity on us!” And when he saw them, he said, “Go show yourselves to the priests.” As they were going they were cleansed. And one of them, realizing he had been healed, returned, glorifying God in a loud voice; and he fell at the feet of Jesus and thanked him. He was a Samaritan. Jesus said in reply, “Ten were cleansed, were they not? Where are the other nine? Has none but this foreigner returned to give thanks to God?” Then he said to him, “Stand up and go; your faith has saved you.”
Sometimes God’s Grace is “overt” and sometimes it is not. The Gospel of the ten lepers is one of the “obvious” Graces of God. Jesus had Mercy on the lepers after they begged Him for His help, but, while there were ten to start, only one of the ten came back to “Thank” Jesus and “Glorify” God. Sometimes, “Thanking” Jesus isn’t our first step, but being Thankful is the Foundation in our Souls upon which God can build amazing things. We’re all good at the “Requesting” part of Praying and that’s important, too. Many of us are really good at the “Confessing” part of Prayer and that’s also important. Often, like the other nine lepers, we sometimes fall short of the “Thankful” and “Praising” parts of Praying that this lone leper did. I was encouraged recently to start my Prayers with words of “Thanks” and to end my Prayers with words of “Praise” (with the “Confessing and Requests” somewhere in the “middle”). By humbling himself and running back to “Thank” Jesus and “Praise” God, the Gospel shows us a “Proven-formula” for growing our relationship with God through Prayer.