“Thank God! Pray to him by name! Tell everyone you meet what he has done! Sing him songs, belt out hymns, translate his wonders into music! Honor his holy name with Hallelujahs, you who seek God. Live a happy life! Keep your eyes open for God, watch for his works; be alert for signs of his presence. Remember the world of wonders he has made, his miracles, and the verdicts he’s rendered – O seed of Abraham, his servant, O child of Jacob, his chosen.” Psalm 105:1-6 Message
It is so easy to find ourselves focusing on the disappointments of life, and the things we think God is not doing. The trouble with doing this is that we will quickly find ourselves living a life of frustration and missing all that God really is doing around us. It is hard to walk with a grateful heart and a frustrated one at the same time. Gratitude is a cure for so much more in our lives than we might like to believe.
In this Psalm, we are told to do a few things that will expose our ingratitude, but will also remedy it. David begins with a strong declaration of two simple words. “Thank God!” These words can hold immense power in our lives if we use them. They have the ability to release us into a place of God focus and away from self focus. They bring to the surface reasons by which we can give thanks to God for who He is. They have the power to shift us from looking at what we think is lacking, to knowing what we really do have. Maybe just thanking God is a really great place to start for anyone wanting to overcome and to see God’s perspective in our world.
Many think you need a reason to give thanks, but to a grateful heart they see there are a multitude of reasons, even in the darkest moments of life, to truly give thanks.
This Psalm challenges us to do just that regardless of what is happening in our lives.
We are told to rejoice in the name of God. His name represents His character. Many boast in success, strength, money, and possessions, but we are to boast in the character and the nature of God. Our God is faithful. Today, tomorrow, or in the future storm, we get to pray to a God who is faithful in our every moment. He is the source of all blessing in our lives. Not one of the blessings we have can we truly say that we have sourced ourselves.
We are reminded to review God’s provisions. God has forgiven all of our rebellions. When Israel failed to believe God at the Red Sea, when they complained about lack of food in the wilderness, or bowed to worship a golden calf, God did not leave them. He provided for and forgave them. Not one moment of your life or of mine has been out of the care of God. Even when we have grown cold in our love He has been our provision. He has been there. He has calmed our storms. He has sustained us in the wilderness. He has been, and continues to be our provider. What do you need? God is your answer.
We are then encouraged to reflect on what God is doing. You can not truly look at God and miss what He is doing. We are told to keep our eyes open for His presence and for His work. Rather than say, “God is doing nothing.” Wouldn’t we be honoring the Word more by believing God is at work and looking around for Him and what He might be doing around us? What am I missing because I have failed to believe God is working in a way that is different than I might be expecting? Today might just be the right moment to stop the human assessment of Divine activity. This type of assessment only reveals the carnality in me, not the character of the One I long to demonstrate. God is not asleep. He is very much awake and very much at work.
Today, I declare, “Thank God!” Thank God that He doesn’t need my faithfulness for Him to be faithful. Thank God for being the source of all the blessings I know and enjoy. Today, as I review God’s provisions in my life I confess, even when I didn’t believe He would come through, He has always come through anyway. As I reflect on what God is doing, I am grateful. He is softening hearts in my community and making people more tender toward Him. He is giving me opportunity to link my life with other members of His body to enrich my life in Him. He is breaking down walls and barriers that previous generations would have only dreamed of seeing fall. God is at work. Today, I give thanks. I am grateful.