“Thank” is a Transitive Verb

Posted by in Celebrate | November 20, 2012

One of my many pet peeves regarding the English language is hearing someone, after they have avoided some disaster, say, “We are thankful.”  I usually address the television asking, “To whom are you thankful?”

This is first a grammatical issue.  “Thank” is a transitive verb and it requires an object to be acted upon.  When one is thankful, he or she must offer thanks to somebody or something.

This is also a philosophical or religious issue.  To whom is one thankful?

It is proper and right to thank someone who has provided you with a service, gift, a courtesy, etc. that is not earned.  For example, when some one holds a door or an elevator for another, the proper thing for the recipient to do is to acknowledge the gracious and respectful action with a “Thank you.”

That brings me to the question, whom do you and I thank this Thanksgiving Day?  We can thank those around us especially family, friends, co-workers, and those we interact with in public for their goodness and generosity toward us.  A “Thank you” shows respect and appreciation.

But what about the God who made all Creation from nothing?  This God  created light in darkness, separated the heavens from the earth, separated the land from the water, brought forth plant life, adorned the heavens  with flying creatures and the seas with swimming creatures, adorned the land with creeping creatures, and made mankind in His image (Genesis 1).  And when man rebelled by eating the fruit from the tree of good and evil, this God promised to become the deliverer Himself, who would reconcile Himself with those who have faith in Him (Genesis 3).

How does one thank this God?  A simple “Thank you” is a start, but King David of ancient Israel (circa 1000 BC), the same one who wrote the psalm “The Lord is my Shepherd,” one thousand years before the Good Shepherd, Jesus Christ, arrived, gave a list of how one thanks this gracious God:

Give thanks to the LORD,call on his name; make known among the nations what he has done. Sing to him, sing praise to him; tell of all his wonderful acts. Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the LORD rejoice. Look to the LORD and his strength; seek his face always. Remember the wonders he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he pronounced, O descendants of Israel his servant, O sons of Jacob, his chosen ones. He is the LORD our God; his judgments are in all the earth. He remembers his covenant forever, the word he commanded, for a thousand generations, the covenant he made with Abraham, the oath he swore to Isaac. He confirmed it to Jacob as a decree, to Israel as an everlasting covenant: “To you I will give the land of Canaan as the portion you will inherit.” When they were but few in number, few indeed, and strangers in it, they wandered from nation to nation, from one kingdom to another. He allowed no man to oppress them; for their sake he rebuked kings: “Do not touch my anointed ones; do my prophets no harm.” Sing to the LORD, all the earth; proclaim his salvation day after day. Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous deeds among all peoples. For great is the LORD and most worthy of praise; he is to be feared above all gods. For all the gods of the nations are idols, but the LORD made the heavens. Splendor and majesty are before him; strength and joy in his dwelling place. Ascribe to the LORD, O families of nations, ascribe to the LORD glory and strength, ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name. Bring an offering and come before him; worship the LORD in the splendor of his holiness. Tremble before him, all the earth! The world is firmly established; it cannot be moved. Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad; let them say among the nations, “The LORD reigns!” Let the sea resound, and all that is in it; let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them! Then the trees of the forest will sing, they will sing for joy before the LORD, for he comes to judge the earth. Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever. Cry out, “Save us, O God our Savior; gather us and deliver us from the nations, that we may give thanks to your holy name, that we may glory in your praise.” Praise be to the LORD, the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting. Then all the people said “Amen” and “Praise the LORD.” (1Ch 16:8-36 NIV)

We would also like to take this time to thank our clients for allowing us to assist them with their engineering investigation needs, “Thank you!”  We also thank our clients, our industry associates, those who provide support services, our web visitors, and all our other contacts throughout the year for assisting and encouraging us in our work.

We wish all of you a time of rest, filled with thankfulness to our Lord and to each other on this Thanksgiving holiday weekend.  (And good shopping on Friday)

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