Szn1 / wk7

Pastor Rich Wilkerson Jr.

To Hell and Back: The Gratitude Effect


MATTHEW 26:20-23, 25-28
20 When evening came, Jesus was reclining at the table with the Twelve. 21 And while they were eating, he said, “Truly I tell you, one of you will betray me.” 22 They were very sad and began to say to him one after the other, “Surely you don’t mean me, Lord?” 23 Jesus replied, “The one who has dipped his hand into the bowl with me will betray me. 25 Then Judas, the one who would betray him, said, “Surely you don’t mean me, Rabbi?” Jesus answered, “You have said so.” 26 While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take and eat; this is my body.” 27 Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. 28 This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.

Main Idea

When was the last time you stood in awe of God’s modern-day blessings? From indoor plumbing to connective technology, we can’t deny his hand showing up even before we needed it. In a radical show of grace, Jesus chose to have his last meal with closest friends, including his betrayer Judas. Knowing the outcome on earth yet expecting the effects in heaven, what Jesus did at that dinner table was bigger than plumbing. If we follow Jesus’ lead, we won’t offer gratitude expecting recognition, instead, we’ll give thanks in response to eternal life. As we practice thanksgiving, we'll do so as a declaration of God's unwavering pursuit of us. Gratitude is a cycle that starts with remembrance and ends with love.

When gratitude is experienced, love will always be expressed!

1. Gratitude protects your perspective & focuses your future

Gratitude helps us to see what matters most
With thankful hearts, we can live for the big picture
Gratitude pushes us not to only endure the journey but enjoy it

My story is to give God glory.

Name one thing you are grateful for today. How will this shape your actions in the future?

2. Gratitude gravitates toward generosity & helps you attract the right attention

Generosity opens up doors that greed can only dream of
Thankful people get noticed and are rarely forgotten
Generous people live in a big world

Generosity is a door for you to walk into a bigger world.

What doors have generosity opened for you?


When facing troubles, never forget the God factor. Jesus’ route to solutions may not seem obvious but with him, there is always an answer. The savior of the world made it possible to combat worry, fear, anger, anxiety, even our greatest problems, by the power of thanksgiving. In essence, gratitude is a concept we must consciously choose to embody every day. The science of gratitude produces a chain reaction of remembrance, love, and hope.

Call to action

Initiate a Facetime or Zoom call with someone to tell them “Thank you, I love you.”
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