Giving Thanks to God

Psalm 100 (NIV)

A psalm. For giving grateful praise.

1 Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.

2     Worship the Lord with gladness;

    come before him with joyful songs.

3 Know that the Lord is God.

    It is he who made us, and we are his;

    we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.

4 Enter his gates with thanksgiving

    and his courts with praise;

    give thanks to him and praise his name.

5 For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;

    his faithfulness continues through all generations.

This is a very special Psalm to me for several reasons. First of all, Psalm 100 helps me to remember how I should first approach God – by always giving thanks. God is so very worthy of all our praise and we should begin our prayers to God by continually giving thanks for our many blessings. Do you begin your prayer time with God by giving thanks to God or do you immediately ask God for what you think you want or need? If you are like me, you also try to “help” God by telling him how to best accomplish those wants and needs. Remember that God knows what we need before we even ask. Focus on beginning your prayer time with God by simply giving thanks for all that God has done for you and for all that God will do for you.

The Apostle Paul writes, “give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thessalonians 5:18).  Paul didn’t list any exclusions or exceptions for giving thanks; rather he said to give thanks in ALL circumstances. That is a difficult concept for many people to grasp but it is one that we should strive to follow, if we truly trust God and believe that “we are his people.” We must remember that “the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.” God will take care of those who are faithful, trusting, obedient, and thankful.

Also, this Psalm of grateful praise helps me to remember a very special Christian lady who passed away several years ago. This was her favorite scripture and I was honored to use this text at her funeral service. She taught many of us how to be thankful for what we have and how to begin our prayer time with God, by giving thanks for God’s mighty hand upon our lives. Being thankful to God was her message to everyone she came into contact with. Her deep faith and trust in God was so evident, that it encouraged many others to be more intentional about first approaching God with grateful praise.

I encourage you to make this Thanksgiving Day (and every day) a day of praise and thanks to God. Take the time to slow down and reflect upon the many blessings that God has given you. Even in difficult times, we can be thankful of God’s presence with us and his help in dealing with and overcoming life’s challenging moments. As we approach the Christmas season and the buying frenzy that it has become, take the time to begin each day by first giving thanks to your creator God for your many blessings.

 

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