“I want to praise the name of God with a song. I want to praise its greatness with a song of thanksgiving. This will please the Lord more than sacrificing an ox or a bull with horns and hoofs.” Psalm 69:30-31 God’s Word Translation
A few verses before this we have David presenting a picture of despair. He puts out a desperate cry, a man unjustly accused, humiliated, and forced to wait for God’s intervention. He releases a strong cry for help. It almost speaks of bitterness. Yet, when his heart transitions to declaring who God is and what God deserves, the remainder of the psalm is about God’s majesty and glory. How much of our agony is because we are focusing on the wrong thing?
In the midst of personal afflictions, the only thing to do is to keep committing our hearts to God. We need to not be focusing on the size of our enemy, but on the magnificence of our God. He will bring us out. David is a reminder of this present truth.
He goes from a place of desperation to a place of exultation in a very brief moment of time.
There are two things that spoke directly to my heart in these verses. First, He vows a song to God while still in the furnace. He did not wait for his circumstances to change in order to burst into declaration of who God is. He did not wait for a better opportunity, or until he felt like it. In the midst of his pain, he offered praise. He vowed a song in the fire. Can I do that?
Secondly, He magnified God with an “offering” of thanksgiving. We think we have to always feel thankful to be thankful. This is not the truth. When I offer to God that which cost me something, He receives my offering. David’s offering of thanksgiving in the midst of the fire was such an offering. It was a sacrifice of his flesh and feelings. It was to let go of self in order to promote and honour his Saviour and Deliverer. Do I do that?
We often bring material offerings to God when we think it has some value, but God does not want material things, He wants our spiritual offerings. The sacrifices of ordination are not to be compared to the sacrifice of a grateful heart. God wants us to be able to see who He is in the furnace and declare that while still in the heat. True thankfulness doesn’t come only when we have a tangible reason to be thankful, but when we have enough confidence in God that we can declare His goodness and offer in brokenness true gratitude unto the honor of His name.
Today, I am thankful that He receives my offerings as small as they are when expressed with gratefulness towards Him. I choose to not wait for a perfect time to honour Him. Or until my feelings line up with truth, but to find tangible ways to maintain a grateful heart, even in the fire.