Say Two Words and Save Western Civilization 1

These two words don’t have anything to do with politics.  Or pop culture.  Or education.  Or the environment.  Or the military.  Or even church.  They transcend all of these. Two words that, if spoken by you (along with a few million others) would radically change the conversation in every sphere of national and personal life.  Two words that may just save a marriage, redeem a community or even change the trajectory of a broken nation.   And more?  These two words are really the key to lasting joy.


Paul, a biblical author, wrote about the disintegration of human cultures; a predicable pattern of walking away from faith, truth, and dignity.  The dark path he outlines ends with this description of a total breakdown: “They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice.  They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless.”

A culture doesn’t get to this point overnight.  No one passes a bill in Congress or starts a ribbon campaign to move a civil society toward disrespect, lewdness and moral despair.  People don’t wake up one day and suddenly decide to commit their lives to unrestrained evildoing. Yet, like the slow-boil of the proverbial fog in the kettle, a once-decent and well-organized society can degenerate into anarchical chaos.

How does this oft-repeated tragedy begin?

Paul summarized it this way: “For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him…”

They didn’t want God to be in charge.  As such, they refused to be grateful; they refused to honor Him.  And once a person stops saying “thank you” to God, it isn’t long before they stop saying “thank you” to anyone.  Smiles turn to scowls.  Joy turns to envy.  Privileges become demands.  Selfishness grows.

Then, sadly, families break up.   Trust is lost.  Communities deteriorate.  Economies suffer.  Protests rise.  Nations crumble.

All of this can be averted, and even reversed – with two words:  Thank you.

“Thank you” adds respect for the gifts and the giver.

“Thank you” recognizes the talents and contributions of others.

“Thank you” fosters the right kind of humility.

“Thank you” is a firewall against an entitlement mentality.

“Thank you” allows for tolerance and patience.

“Thank you” encourages frugality rather than waste.

“Thank you” blesses both givers and receivers.

“Thank you” stifles envy and anger.

“Thank you” inspires people, of any age, from any background.

“Thank you” adds joy to every aspect of life.

Grateful hearts lead us back toward love, back toward wisdom, back toward generosity, back toward contentment, back toward smiles, and ultimately, back toward God.  Grateful hearts can heal families, promote kindness, share blessings and restore hope.

So join me in saving Western Civilization today.  With your words and in your heart, to parents, kids, siblings, co-workers, bosses, soldiers, coaches, doctors, officials, pastors, friends, neighbors, servers, contractors, clerks, investors, cleaners, teachers, owners, drivers and whomever else adds value to your life – say “thank you.”  Then look toward heaven, toward the One who makes it all possible, and offer a prayer of thanksgiving.  There’s so much to enjoy.  So much to experience.  So much to accomplish.  So much to life.  What a gift.  Thank you.


>>>>>  Share some thanks-giving!  Post this article to your social profile and along with it, list some people for whom you are grateful – this will spark some thanks-giving among your friends.  Also, feel free to add whatever thoughts you have in the comment section below.

One comment on “Say Two Words and Save Western Civilization

  1. Reply Robert Bures Nov 22, 2012 2:16 pm

    Pastor Jarvis: I whole heartedly agree with these sentiments. However, what I find more troubling and personally annoying is the inability of people to express the complement to Thank you: You’re Welcome. In all facets of society, on radio and television,and in educated circles, Thank you will be answered with Thank you or No…thank you. Remember the old Hanna Barbera cartoon Chip ‘n Dale? Polite one-upmanship taken to its silly extreme? You’re Welcome implies a level of humility. In other words, I acknowledge your graciousness in a manner that does not diminish or overpower your sentiment.

    It may be a manifestation of a “me” oriented culture where perceived individual needs, competition and winning overshadow all. It is no different than being a parent or an effective leader. Sometimes, you must empower another and let them shine, let them take center stage, give them public credit for their good work. Sometimes, someone else must win! As well, failure should be shared. I won’t take credit for your success, but I will share responsibility for your failure.

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