Give thanks to the Lord?
In Psalm 92:1-2, it’s suggested that it is good to give thanks to the Lord. In addition to that, singing praises to His name adds to the jubilant recommendation. And finally, we’re to declare God’s lovingkindness and faithfulness both morning and night.
How can we give thanks and sing praises when life is a struggle? If we’re walking in the darkness of loss or hurt, why would we? What is there to be thankful for when life is tragic? If God is almighty, we might question why He’d allow the difficulties that have us far from peace.
Who is it good for?
If it’s good to give thanks and praise to the Lord, who is it good for? I’d gather that God has continued without fail whether we’ve thanked and praised Him or not. Then it must be good for us! It is, and here’s where faith can be your catapult to living joyfully instead.
Life is tough. Our journey here on earth seems to be a mix of tragedy, good fortune, confusion, and happiness. There are days of achievement, but there are also days of discouragement, pulling at emotions that dictate what kind of day we’ll experience. We strive to find balance, experience peace, or make some sense of the life we’re living. Have faith. There is good for us.
Does God really offer lovingkindness and faithfulness?
Lovingkindness, by definition, is tenderness and consideration for others. It’s the opposite of ill will toward someone. Faithfulness is the quality of being faithful or true to another person. These are God’s traits toward us, and yet the difficult lives many of us succumb to lead us to question whether He really offers them to us.
How can we excitedly tell others of God’s lovingkindness and faithfulness? We who are broken can’t even absorb His wonderfulness for ourselves. Additionally, we’re expected to exhibit these traits as proof of our faith. That’s some pressure, huh? No matter how much we try to apply faith, we’ll struggle. God’s traits aren’t meant to be applied. He lives them. When He is at our center, His qualities show through us.
Can we offer lovingkindness and faithfulness?
Is it possible for us to offer lovingkindness and faithfulness? Due to our own failure to achieve these qualities, we condemn ourselves. Also, we’re resentful of others who lack the same ability. Do we offer lovingkindness to those who’ve hurt us or our loved ones? Likely not. What takes its place? Animosity, frustration, an overwhelming feeling of unfairness. We wish our enemy would pay consequences that make them hurt. We want justice! At what cost?
Fidelity, faithfulness, for many of us, is a lofty expectation too, often met with disappointment. Many have been hurt by unfaithful people. On the other hand, though we judge people for this, we also find ourselves among those who struggle with being faithful. The guilt can be crushing.
So, if we don’t have anything to feel thankful for, if we’ve nothing praiseworthy happening in our lives, why would we even think of God as faithful? We’d be hard pressed to consider the things God is allowing as lovingkindness. Right?
God’s qualities fill us!
However, as the Psalm suggests, in a posture of praise and thankfulness for our Lord, we can declare God’s lovingkindness and faithfulness. Again, these are God’s qualities. They are part of His essence. He is a God of love. He will not turn from His children, ever, and we can experience what these qualities mean personally to us. Greater still, we can exhibit them outwardly, even in the most trying of circumstances.
When we ask Christ to be at our center, when we ask His Holy Spirit to come into us, God’s qualities fill us. This takes a step of faith, asking Him in. I want you to take it, though, and watch God move! The more we focus on Him, talk with Him, listen for Him, wait on Him, and grow to trust Him, the stronger we experience His qualities. He has much to teach us who come close to Him. God’s lovingkindness and faithfulness are personally revealed to us. As a result, the revelation of His essence causes us to give thanks, sing praises, and declare loudly what He can do. God allows His traits to shine through us to touch others as He intends.
You will declare God’s lovingkindness!
So you must get to know your Creator on a very private and intimate level. Keep your eyes on Him constantly, converse with Him always. Seek His wisdom, love, peace, and guidance every day. Naturally, His traits will infiltrate your being as His Spirit responds. Finally, the old will pass away. Every morning and every night you’ll find it hard to resist and you will declare it!
We praise You Lord. We thank You for Your lovingkindness and faithfulness toward us, even when we hadn’t seen or deserved it. May those who’ve wronged us see these traits of Yours shining from within us so that they might also find hope in You.